Fourth Amendment of the Constitution Bill, 1972: First Stage.

I move: "That leave be granted to introduce a Bill entitled an Act to amend the Constitution."

What is this about?

The fourth amendment of the Constitution.

Is this votes at 18?

And it is proposed to put it through now and hold the referendum in October. Is that right?

It is proposed to put the First Stage to the Dáil now.

But not necessarily to finish the Bill in this session?

No, I do not think so.

Question put and agreed to.

Is the Bill ready for circulation?

I am told it will be ready shortly for circulation.

Provisionally, I suppose.

If it is intended to have the referendum in October, must a certain time not elapse between the passage of the Bill and the holding of the referendum?

The date of the referendum would, from recent experience, be a minimum of 30 and a maximum of 90 days from the date the Bill is passed.

On the assumption that we would come back at the end of September or the first week in October, it would mean that the referendum would not be held until at least the last week in October or the first week in November. Is that right?

The Minister is not available but——

I think you are a bit confused about the date yourself, are you not?

If the Bill were through, the Minister could then fix a date after that as happened in the last referendum.

Not sooner than 30 days before and not later than 90 days after.

Second Stage ordered for Tuesday, 4th July, 1972.