Bertie Ahern has told the Dáil today that Ireland's Referendum on the Lisbon Treaty will be held in the second week of June.
He told Fine Gael leader Enda Kenny that the government had discussed the date at its meeting this morning and had "more or less signed off on the date", but the day of the week had not been finally settled.
The Taoiseach said he would consult with Deputy Kenny and Labour leader Eamon Gilmore about the day of the week, pointing out that the second referendum on the Nice Treaty was held on a Saturday, while the first took place on a Thursday.
Responding to concerns raised by Fine Gael's Alan Shatter about Leaving Certificate students who would be unable to concentrate on the referendum due to their examinations, Mr. Ahern pointed out that most of them were finished by June 12th.
This would suggest he might consider a vote on Friday, June 13th or Saturday, June 14th.
Sinn Féin's Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin asked the Taoiseach whether he would rule out a second vote if the people rejected the Lisbon Treaty, but Bertie Ahern - obviously embarrassed - did not respond.
It appears that the government, as well as the other partners in the YES camp (mainly Fine Gael, the Labour Party, the PDs and 2/3 of the Green Party), believe that they will have a plain sailing and the people will be "good citizens" and accept the treaty, as they are told to do by their leaders.
If this is a correct assessment remains to be seen, as more and more flaws in the Lisbon Treaty become known and an increasing number of citizens become more concerned.
The Emerald Islander