For those hiding under a rock, the UK’s future in the EU is being decided right now by means of a referendum.
This, coupled with the constant talk of a plebiscite for marriage equality in Australia got me thinking.
Generally, referendums and plebiscites are meant to show the will of a people on a single topic. However, they are not always binding and the government of the day does not have to act on them. This is particularly apparent in Australia where a number of Senators/MP's have come out and said that regardless of the result, they will vote against equality (making it a ridiculously expensive exercise in futility), and it could still be the case in Britain.
So my question is, are there any examples in the last 100 years where a government has gone against the result of a referendum/plebiscite? If so, what are they?
Please note: Yes, in some areas (like Australia) there is a distinct difference between a Plebiscite and a Referendum depending on if it changes the Constitution or not. That's not really relevant to this question though, as it's dealing with a populist decision that the government has asked the electorate for but subsequently ignored.