Meath West result: Yes 63.95% and No 36.05%

‘The vote is quite clear today...the Irish have taken a considered view’

‘There is still a sizable minority who still believe that all unborn life should be protected,’ said Sinn Féin TD Peadar Tóibín, who broke ranks with his party on the issue of abortion. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

‘There is still a sizable minority who still believe that all unborn life should be protected,’ said Sinn Féin TD Peadar Tóibín, who broke ranks with his party on the issue of abortion. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

 

Meath West’s TDs were notable by their absence from the count centre in Trim, which returned a 64 per cent Yes vote today.

Speaking by telephone, Sinn Féin TD Peadar Tóibín, who broke ranks with his party on the issue of abortion, expressed his “disappointment” with the result.

Meanwhile, Fine Gael TD Damien English, who also stayed away from the count at the GAA club, said it was incumbent now on the Government to introduce legislation as soon as possible.

The Minister of State at the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government took no part in the campaign.

A total of 41,319 out of the electorate of 65,651, representing a 62.75 per cent turnout, took to the polling booths in the constituency yesterday to have their say in the abortion referendum.

The Yes vote was returned by 26,343 people while (63.9 per cent) while the No camp amounted to 14,850.

“I always said, from day one, that politicians should not have become involved in this,” Mr English said after the count.

“As politicians, we had a right to make sure a referendum occurred but after that, I felt that it was the people’s choice and we should have let them made their own mind up.

“The vote is quite clear today although I did think it would have been a closer result, but in favour of repeal.

“The Irish have taken a considered view on this and it’s our job now to debate the details, work together and bring in legislation as quickly as possible,” he said.

Meanwhile, Mr Tóibín said that the “sizable minority” who voted to retain the Eighth Amendment should be considered when making legislation.

“It has been repealed by a large majority and democratic will of the Irish people should be respected.

“Women and children were at the heart of this debate and now the Government should redouble their efforts in providing resources into areas such as maternity services and childcare,” he said.

He added: “It has been a difficult and divisive campaign and there is still a sizable minority who still believe that all unborn life should be protected. We have to make sure that these people are equally included in the debate going forward.”

Meath West’s third TD, Fianna Fáil’s Shane Cassells, who was in the No camp, could not be contacted for comment.