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Filling a blank

Credit to Vincent Browne: on what would otherwise be the silly season, and apparently on his holliers, he has been stirring the pot in his feud with Denis O’Brien via his column in the Irish Times (also on politico.ie). Today’s salvo is mostly devoted to DOB’s role at Independent Newspapers, but VB leaves out a [...]

Doubts about Coalition deal

Opposition is emerging from some Labour and FG TDs, Labour councillors to the prospect of a FG-Labour Coalition. Dublin MEP Proinsias de Rossa has said the party ‘should be prepared to go into Opposition’ if FG refuses to implement elements of Labour’s “Social Democratic Programme”. Former Enterprise, Trade and Employment and Energy and Natural Resources [...]

Dublin Key to Fine Gael’s Last 2 Weeks

A week or so ago, as we were in the midst of a deluge of polls, I hazarded that Fine Gael may be on route to a majority or very close to it. While legitimate doubts were raised at the time, the trend for FG since has been upward and tonights margin-of-error beating 3% rise [...]

Fine Gael Party Political Broadcast

Not as focussed on the leader as the others.

Solving the HSE Conundrum

Lest we continue to get distracted by polls and process, it is definitely noteworthy to point readers to the health policy announced today by Fine Gael. The policy, headlined as abolishing the HSE, reads like a step-by-step dismantling of the public-private divide to replace it with a system of private insurance and universal coverage, semi-private [...]

‘Schedule’ is Kenny’s Latest Reason to Avoid Debate

In case you have better things to do on a Sunday, you may not have shown up to hear FG present their HSE aboliton policy today (its the same one as before, with detail promised for the manifesto). Rightly so, there was a lot of sport on. In case you missed it, Enda offered reason [...]

Noonan’s Ralph Wiggum Heartbreak & Awkward Gilmore Canvas: RTE Nine News Reality Hurts More Than Satire

This year’s election campaign is less than a week old and already has jumped from the sublime to the ridiculous. Last night’s Nine News, case in point.

Fine Gael Open’s Election Positions

As the dissolution of the Dail nears, many leaders took the opportunity today to outline their focus for the campaign ahead. While the debate issue has put Enda Kenny on the backfoot at a national level, within the party today he spoke to all of Fine Gael’s #GE11 candidates and delivered a speech outlining the [...]

Strategery, Irish style

The latest Red C poll illustrates a dynamic that could prompt some Machiavellian thoughts in Fine Gael, if they are not there already.  Specifically, from a FG perspective, what other party should you have tacit cooperation with, not so much in terms of a future partner, but one whose expression of positions you could facilitate? [...]

Dail Eireann: Use only in emergencies

It didn’t seem possible that the Irish political system could look more busted today than it did yesterday but that’s where the version of Lanigan’s Ball from the Greens leaves it.   Michael Lowry — having had the leverage of his side-deal with the Coalition for nearly 3 years in return for his vote, runs to [...]

First get the history right

As ratings agencies, pundits, and the occasional minister demand that Fine Gael provide political cover for the next 4 budgets — with 3 years of disastrous decions to be taken as water under the bridge — Edward Walsh steps up to the plate in the Irish Times to make the case in stirring historical terms: [...]

Tomorrow’s Red C Poll – FG still largest party

Thanks to politics.ie. FG 31 (-2) FF24,(nc) LAB 23 (-4) SF 10 (+2) GR 3 (+1) Oths 9 (+3) Underlines volatility of Labour vote. Also public satisfaction with Brian Cowen is 19% to 64% dissatisfied and 17% undecided. 29% are more likekly to vote vote FF with Cowen replaced, including 21% of FG and Labour [...]

FG-Labour: Let asylum-seekers work

In a week when the use of forged documentation in the asylum-system was highlighted with the rejection by the Supreme Court of the appeal of Nigerian asylum-seeker Pamela Izevbekhai against her deportation, FG and Labour are proposing the allow asylum-seekers to work. Despite 13% unemployment and mass-emigration – Alan Shatter and Pat Rabbitte are now [...]

Speeches from No/Confidence Motion

Another day, another confidence motion. Well it may have been if #fgheave was not going on in the background. If you care to watch the main speeches you can watch Enda Kenny here (with James Reilly his new best friend/wannabe deputy leader sitting beside him) , Brian Cowen and him saying sorry for the government’s [...]

Don’t mention the war

Here’s the text of Brian Cowen’s speech entitled “A Decade of Commemorations — Commemorating Our Shared History” to the Institute for British Irish Studies at UCD today.  There are various points to make.  One is that these speeches — and this is not Cowen’s fault — have adopted a psychobabble language since they are written [...]

Hello, I must be going

A day after George Lee’s departure, we can see a situation that would have warranted another George politician to say “Heckuva job”.  Lee’s departure obscured the implosion of the year-long government talking point that NAMA would increase bank lending: the IMF had told them, quite sensibly, that it wouldn’t.  According to Enda’s statement yesterday, Lee [...]

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