Burton hints at permanent referendum commissioner

The Minister for Social Protection Joan Burton says the government needs to examine whether or not we need a permanent - or semi permanent - Referendum Commissioner.

Burton says having someone in the role full time would allow the commission to consider information about proposed changes to the constitution and make it easier for ordinary people to understand.

It comes after the Supreme Court ruled that some sections of the government's booklet and website on the Children's Referendum were not fair, equal or impartial.

The referendum was passed yesterday by a margin of 58 to 42 per cent, with low voter turnout around the country.

Minister Burton says preparation needs to get underway in referendum campaigns at an early stage: "That could be facilitated by a semi-permanent referendum commissioner which can consider the information campaign about proposed referenda even in advance of the government committing.

"They would be then ready to spring into action the moment the government decides a referendum should take place."

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