| 14.3°C Dublin

Close

Premium


Smaller parties have a great opportunity - just don't over-promise or under-deliver

Colette Browne


Close

‘Planet Bertie’: Green Party leader Trevor Sargent with Taoiseach Bertie Ahern (left) in 2006. Photo: Collins

‘Planet Bertie’: Green Party leader Trevor Sargent with Taoiseach Bertie Ahern (left) in 2006. Photo: Collins

‘Planet Bertie’: Green Party leader Trevor Sargent with Taoiseach Bertie Ahern (left) in 2006. Photo: Collins

In 2007, then Green Party leader Trevor Sargent coined the phrase "Planet Bertie" to describe Fianna Fáil as a party that was "so strange and so alien to our sensibilities" that the two could never join forces in government.

Despite this, the Green Party was sucked into Fianna Fáil's orbit and they formed a coalition, with Mr Sargent stepping down as leader to facilitate the deal.

At the time, there was no recession and no national crisis. The Green Party was happy to cast previous promises aside and enter government to implement its policy proposals.