Friday 21 July 2017

Editorial: Business of Government delayed for long enough

It's now time for Taoisech Enda Kenny and his cabinet to get back to work. Photo: Peter Cavanagh.
It's now time for Taoisech Enda Kenny and his cabinet to get back to work. Photo: Peter Cavanagh.

The democratic process does take time and we have to accept that. But it is not being churlish or overly demanding to point out that the business of government has been in abeyance for more than two months now. The run-in to the local and European elections on May 23 took a lot of our senior politicians away from Leinster House and various government departments for the necessary business of campaigning. Days after the outcome of those elections, the Labour Party began their long internal dialogue with the drawn-out business of choosing a new leader and deputy leader.

The upshot is that Government has been disrupted for all of May and June. And with the talks starting today on re-orienting Coalition Government priorities, and the intriguing business of picking a new Cabinet to follow, we can say confidently that very little government business will be done this coming week either.

The coming days will be meat and drink for people who love their politics. But beyond intrigue and politicking lies some very serious business for all our citizens. The country is still broke and the Government is still borrowing to meet day-to-day needs. There is a huge over-hang in long-term debt – and not just the bank debt. There are serious problems to be addressed in our health and education systems, to name but a few pressing sectors. We need solid reliable government to help us re-order our affairs and drive the economy definitively out of recession. We need continuity of government. The very last thing we need is an untimely general election.

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