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Notable quotes from the Irish referendum on gay marriage

Yes supporters celebrate as the first results start to filter through in the Irish referendum at Dublin, Ireland, Saturday, May 23, 2015. Ireland has voted resoundingly to legalize gay marriage in the world's first national vote on the issue, leaders on both sides of the Irish referendum declared Saturday even as official ballot counting continued. Senior figures from the "no" campaign, who sought to prevent Ireland's constitution from being amended to permit same-sex marriages, say the only question is how large the "yes" side's margin of victory will be from Friday's vote. (AP Photo/Peter Morrison)

DUBLIN (AP) — Some reaction Saturday to Ireland’s national vote on legalizing gay marriage:

“A little island at the end of Europe on its way to America has shown that such a small nation can be a beacon of light throughout the world.” — John Lyons, an openly gay member of the Irish parliament, the Dail.


“People from the (gay) community in Ireland are a minority, but with our parents, our families, or friends and co-workers and colleagues, we’re a majority. … For me, it wasn’t just a referendum. It was more like a social revolution.” — Leo Varadkar, Ireland’s health minister who earlier announced he is gay.


“Obviously I’m disappointed that our constitution is going to change in this way and it will have some negative impacts that I think are important, but there’s a lot of goodness in Irish people. There’s a lot of goodness in why people were voting ‘yes’ and why people were voting ‘no.'” — Irish Sen. Ronan Mullen.


“No parent brings a child into the world to consign them to second-class citizenship.” — Mary McAleese, the former president of Ireland who urged a ‘yes’ vote after her gay son kept his sexuality a secret for fear of others.


“Going forward, we will continue to affirm the importance of the biological ties and of motherhood and fatherhood. … We hope the government will address the concerns voters on the ‘no’ side have about the implications for freedom of religion and freedom of conscience.” — David Quinn of the Iona Institute, a Catholic think tank.


“‘Hats off!’ to all of Ireland and its people. … The Irish ‘yes’ is a vote guided by love and the growing need for a recognition of equality. “” — a statement from Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo’s office.


“Now that we have a republic of equals and republic of freedom and a republic of love: Today in this new Ireland, Ann Louise Gilligan, will you marry me?” — Katherine Zappone, a feminist theologian who with her partner has been campaigning for marriage equality for years.

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