Monday 27 February 2017

Kenny must play hardball with Independents because we badly need a government now

Shane Coleman

Shane Coleman

'If some Independents are looking for too much, Kenny & co should move on without them.' Photo: Gerry Mooney
'If some Independents are looking for too much, Kenny & co should move on without them.' Photo: Gerry Mooney

It is, sadly, more déjà vu than 'new', politics right now. For all the unique make-up of the 32nd Dáil, there remains a depressing sense that we've been here before.

For the abolition, sorry "suspension", of water charges, read Fianna Fáil's scrapping of rates in 1977. Or the decision on the eve of an election two decades later by Labour - yes, Minister Kelly, wholesome, 'only in the national interest' Labour - to end the requirement for all new homes to have a water meter installed.

The sweetheart deals with Independents, meanwhile, have been done on countless occasions before, most famously with Charlie Haughey's 1982 'Gregory Deal'. The stand-out item from the current 'pork barrel' list of demands is an unnamed TD's request that the government explore options for getting from the West to Dublin Airport without using the motorways. Where do you start with that one?

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