ABC Radio National this week ran a programme on constitutional referenda in Australia, in the context of a debate on the proposal to recognise Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders in the Australian constitution.
Referendums have become synonymous with failure in Australia, even when initial polling shows great support for a proposed change.
The figures are well known: 44 referendums have been put to the Australian people, but only eight have been passed.
The programme highlighted the various roadblocks that constitutional referenda face. The record of failed referenda in Australia is worth keeping in mind as the current debate continues.