Ireland's reputation as a devoutly Catholic and conservative country is being defied by the prospect of becoming the first nation to approve gay marriage by referendum. But it's not as odd as one might think.
With neither the Conservatives nor Labour likely to win a majority in the May 7 elections, a coalition is almost certainly in the cards – and Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party a possible partner.
Ian Paisley in the EU parliament once shouted at Pope John Paul II, 'I denounce you as the anti-Christ.' But he later toned down his hatred for Catholics, even working with former members of the IRA. He died today.