Thursday 27 July 2017

Brendan O'Connor: Can Harris be our unlikely saviour of Irish politics?

The health minister may be a political nerd, but he could be the one to radically change how the country is governed, writes Brendan O'Connor

OPPORTUNITY: Health minister Simon Harris came into politics through activism and could be seen to represent the ‘service-user’ side of things more
OPPORTUNITY: Health minister Simon Harris came into politics through activism and could be seen to represent the ‘service-user’ side of things more

Consider something for a second. As unlikely as this might sound, what if young Simon Harris is the one we've been waiting for? What if he is the disruptor? What if he is the one who is finally going to change politics in this country?

My generation thought we would be different. That our politics would not be like that of our parents. And certainly, things changed a bit. There's a lot of people spouting a lot of hot air and getting furious with each other on the internet. And there are a few more women and a few more guys without ties in the Dail. And there is confidence and supply. But essentially it's the same faces, the same types, the same parties, the same big stitch-up between them all.

In Ireland, it's clear now the disruption is not going to come from the left. It certainly won't come from the far right. And it's doubtful that it will come from Sinn Fein, who are basically just working towards becoming the new Fianna Fail.

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