The outgoing government has done exceptionally well in exceptional times. The magnitude of the decisions made in the past few weeks will be felt for many years. However grateful we are for its handling of this emergency, this was never intended to be a permanent assignment.
Democracy must always command respect and election results must always count for something. So there can be no more delay in putting a new administration together.
If anything, the grave challenges only add to the urgency. For as Ronald Reagan once noted: "Nothing lasts longer than a temporary government programme."
This is in no way to detract from the exemplary leadership we have seen. Daunting though coming days may look, we know they would be dramatically worse were it not for the invaluable advice given by the State's expert medical teams, which was deftly acted on as swiftly as practicable.
Our hearts must be with other countries that have not been so fortunate.
The relentless onslaught of the virus is still devastating. In Europe, Spain alone has a total of 117,710 confirmed cases, and is now second in the number of infections only to the US, which has a population some seven times larger. Spain's death toll now stands at 10,935, second only to Italy, with 13,915 fatalities. Everything we can do to shield ourselves from similar catastrophe has to be considered whatever it takes.
Only last September, a remarkable report was commissioned for the Johns Hopkins Centre for Health Security, in the US. It predicted healthcare systems could be overwhelmed, medical supply chains snapped and the need for vaccines and drugs would be overwhelming. It also had the prescience to suggest governments might have to turn to social distancing and other so-called non-pharmaceutical interventions. What it could not say was how effective they might prove. It has never been used on a global scale, but with all other assumptions being turned on their heads, the outbreak has confirmed the most potent weapon we have is still to keep apart to pause the pandemic.
Our fates lie in continuing to react, readjust and adapt to our rapidly changing situations to best prepare for the anticipated surge.
Containment strategies to flatten the curve are paying off, and this should encourage us should they need to be further stepped up.
The Central Bank has warned over the next three months it believes the economy here could collapse by 25pc.
Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe says we will have to rebuild our economy, as we will.
We need a government prepared to take on the fight, and politicians who run from it will not be forgiven. The sums may be staggering but lives and livelihoods are being saved. As one US politician said: "Better for now to be buried in debt than buried in a coffin."