Doherty and SF point the way for opposition
HERE'S an interesting question. Name the only political party that has held a briefing with embassies here to explain their economic policy?
Could it be Fine Gael which has the honour of being in Government and which is trying to build bridges with other European countries. The party that claims to be attempting to win concessions from our partners and promised at the last elections that it would forge a new relationship with Europe? No.
Could it be Fianna Fail, the party that almost destroyed our relations with Europe and which now flits between high-minded lectures on all matters European by Micheal Martin and the Tory-like Euro-scepticism of Eamon O Cuiv? Try again.
Maybe it's Labour, the party that has perhaps the best links with other European governments thanks to the Continent's swing to the Left. Could Labour have taken it upon themselves to brief the rest of Europe about what is happening in this mad house?
Many diplomats are still waiting to discover whether it is indeed Labour's way or Frankfurt's way and would welcome an answer to Foreign Minister Eamon Gilmore's pre-election riddle. Wrong again.
No, the only party to have briefed the embassies here about their economic policies is Sinn Fein which was represented by the very fluent Pearse Doherty.
In the big scheme of things, it is a small matter but it goes some way to explaining why the 'Financial Times' recently described Mr Doherty as the de facto leader of the opposition.