Wednesday 23 August 2017

No, we do not have New Politics - we just have a crocked FG-FF coalition

Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin during the last TV debate on RTE's 'Prime Time' before the general election in 2016 Photo: Tony Maxwell/PA Wire
Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin during the last TV debate on RTE's 'Prime Time' before the general election in 2016 Photo: Tony Maxwell/PA Wire
John Downing

John Downing

For some of us it seems far longer. But the calendar tells us that, on this very day 12 months ago, Enda Kenny's second term as Taoiseach began its shaky onward journey. On May 6, 2016, there was much talk about "new politics" as a government finally emerged from 70 days of negotiations. But the experience of the last year suggests that new politics is not viable for Ireland.

Or as the newly re-elected Green Party leader Eamon Ryan correctly predicted on that day 12 months ago - we have not "become Swedes or Scandinavians overnight".

The sluggish output of law-making, with just 23 bills enacted over the past year, is really only an indicator of a dysfunctional political machine. The general lack of direction on show in Dáil proceedings is a much clearer indication that all is not well.

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