Break out the champers, glitter and get ready to don your best celebratory party dress, because Ireland said Yes! The nation has said a massively enthusiastic?YES to same-sex marriage, which means we arethe first country EVER to legalise same-sex marriage by popular vote. We're so overcome with emotion (we'll definitely need more tissues), and just seeing how happy this has made so many people is a great thing to witness. By making the YES vote happen, same-sex couples' lives across the country have been changed forever - and for the better.
Basically, Ireland, you had everyone at Yes.
In what has been probably the most emotionally wrought referendum to grip our nation, thanks to an overwhelming majority public vote, we've now set a precedent for equal rights for every couple in our fair land, and we just hope it's a taste of more positive things to come for our emerald isle (feel free to follow suite, neighbouring countries). This is, hopefully, just one small step for same-sex couples, but boy (and girl), will it make a massive difference. It makes us feel proud to say we are an international champion for all things equality, and it really makes us feel all warm and fuzzy inside.
The Yes campaigners won what could be called a landslide victory; all but one constituency?voted Yes overall. This means that a new era has really begun for our country. The result was called in the early hours of today, saying that Yes had won the vote by a 2:1 majority, with final results this evening saying that over 62 per cent voted Yes. A record number of people also hit the polls to cast their votes, which is only brilliant. More people voted in this landmark referendum than any other in the history of the state - a massive acheivment in itself. It means that almost everyone came out to get behind this life-changing campaign.
It's been an emotional, truly heartfelt journey for all who said Yes, and a few moments have made us stand up and say how truly proud we are to be Irish. We've used mountains of tissues as we welcomed a wave of emigrants back #HomeToVote on Friday, and their positive messages of warmth lifted our world-weary hearts. We also had one of our very own artists, Joe Caslin, have his incredible work featured on the front page of The New York Times ? you?go?Joe. For all this and more, those who said Yes should feel infinitely proud. We really are a grand ?aul bunch altogether, aren't we?
Since the result was announced, there have been floods of tears and positive messages coming in from, frankly everywhere. The nation has dominated social media over the last 48 hours and we're betting this will only continue as the day wears on. Ireland has been truly thrown into the spotlight for the lovliest of reasons, and our nation and the world along with us, is celebrating as they should.
Here are some of our favourite reactions to the result so far:
Ireland did it! The 1st country to legalize marriage equality by popular vote, but they won't be the last! What an incredible accomplishment
? Ellen DeGeneres (@TheEllenShow) May 23, 2015
? Fintan Gillespie (@fintangillespie) May 23, 2015
? Francesca Comyn (@cescacomyn) May 23, 2015
? Conor Pope (@conor_pope) May 23, 2015
? Martina Fitzgerald (@MartinaFitzg) May 23, 2015
Sitting here watching the Irish make history. Extraordinary and wonderful.
? J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) May 23, 2015
? Leanne Woodfull (@LeanneWoodfull) May 23, 2015
So happy Ireland have passed the law to get married there. Still genuinely shocks me thou, that this is only just happening!!
? SAM SMITH (@samsmithworld) May 23, 2015
Tonight is a night for serious celebration, and we've no doubt that much (possibly Eurovision-themed) craic will be had.
We know it's never easy to accept defeat (the No crowd did their best to be sure), but, in this case, it seems the right side won, and very fairly at that.
Go forth and celebrate Ireland, because you rock. You really do.
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