Thursday 22 February 2018

FF under fire for failing to act on Seanad reform

Michael Brennan Deputy Political Editor

FIANNA Fail's record on Seanad reform has come under fire after it emerged the party was criticised for failing to submit a plan while in Government.

The party was criticised by the Green Party Environment Minister for failing to make a submission on time to his Seanad reform group in 2009.

The official minutes from the group show that Fine Gael, Labour, Sinn Fein and the Greens submitted reform proposals. But Fianna Fail said it hadn't been able to "due to pressures of parliamentary business". At the time, John Gormley called on the party to speed it up. Fine Gael TD Simon Harris said it showed how seriously Fianna Fail took Seanad reform. "Fianna Fail couldn't even find the time to make a submission," he added.

Fianna Fail Seanad referendum campaign director Niall Collins accused Mr Harris of trying to distract voters and not mentioning that Fine Gael was calling for reform at the time rather than abolition.

"Fine Gael's entire strategy in this referendum is based on misinformation," he said.

It comes as the latest 'Sunday Business Post'/Red C opinion poll showed that the number supporting Seanad abolition dropped slightly to 50pc.

Irish Independent

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