Presidential opponents struggle for nomination…

It seems that the current incumbent of the office of President Mary McAleese may be returned unopposed next month. Fine Gael leader Enda Kenny has decided to back her and not put up a candidate for his own party. The decision is not binding on all members of his party, but has help create difficulty for two potential opponents to gain either the required 20 members of the Oireachtas or support of four local authorities.

  • maca

    I just thank god and the 72 virgins that Dana didn’t get support!

  • Davros

    Can I ask those from the ROI if there is any serious discontent with Mary McAleese ?
    Certainly it seems to me as if she’s a credit to the Republic and has helped improve it’s image in my community.

    And I hope nobody is offended , but wouldn’t Dana have exactly the opposite effect ? She would be seen as a step back towards the days of McQuaid.

  • maca

    The president has shag all to do anyway, so there’s little wrong Mary could actually do. I think most people are quite happy with her.

    But Dana … *shudder* … it would be a low day that she became president. I’d have to rethink my citizenship 😉

  • smcgiff

    ‘And I hope nobody is offended , but wouldn’t Dana have exactly the opposite effect’

    It’s embarrassing enough to think she got 14% of the vote last time.

    There is more chance of the Rev. Ian Paisley personally hoisting the tricolour over Stormont than there is of Dana becoming the next President of the Republic!

  • maca

    … jeez, I won’t sleep tonight now that Dana is in my head. Bugger.

  • Davros

    Come on maca …she’s wholesome and an inspiration to us all 🙂

  • peteb

    Mary McAleese may not have interfered with the enactment of legislation. But if anyone thinks that wee Rosemary wouldn’t use each and every opportunity that came across her desk (god forbid) to try to impose her own particular brand of fundamentalism, they’d be sadly mistaken.

  • maca

    Don’t be fooled Davros “Satan disguises himself as an angel of light”

    Eph.6:10-12
    “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the air, and especially that bird Dana.”

  • smcgiff

    Peteb,

    What fundamentalism would that be then?

    Apart from being a member of that precarious NI occupation – lawyer.

  • peteb

    smcgiff

    Far be it from me to stand in the way of you being offended.. but the “wee Rosemary” I referred to was not Mary McAleese, who I pointed out *hasn’t* interfered in legislation, but the ‘blessed’ Dana who would *if* she was given the opportunity.

    A little more thought and a little less knee-jerk reaction next time, perhaps?

  • smcgiff

    Oh, her!

    Ah well, I doubt you’d get much argument on this website (or most for that matter) on that score.

    ‘A little more thought and a little less knee-jerk reaction next time, perhaps?’

    Sadly, I can’t make any promises, as I’m sure it won’t be the last time I do it!

  • Young Irelander

    I have to agree with other contributors on this thread.I think Dana as president would be an embarrassment.
    I mean,her most notable accomplishment is in winning the Eurovision.Why not have Johnny Logan campaign to boot?
    McAleese has done fine and I wouldn’t begrudge her another term.The only person that could topple her would be the man himself John Hume but it seems it won’t happen.

  • peteb

    YI

    She’s been riding on the back of that particular triumph for some time now… up to and including her previous election as an MEP…

    I wonder what the late, great Bill Hicks would have to say about how that came to pass? :o)

  • Davros

    Bill Hicks ? who he ?

  • peteb

    *shakes head in disbelief*

  • Boomtown Wrath

    There are signs that Michael D. Higgins may run for the Labour Party which would make for an interesting campaign given that, with Eamon Ryan of the Greens (and perhaps others) on the pitch, transfers could mean a closer run election than may appear to the case now. In any event, surely it’s better to have an election in order to ventilate the issues and exercise democracy, particularly given the length of the term at seven years, rather than allow McAleese be returned unopposed?

  • Davros

    If as Maca says the President doesn’t have a political function ( translation from “shag all to do anyway” )would an election address any issues ?

  • peteb

    It is a largely, by convention, ceremonial role, Davros.

    But it does, if I’m right, include signing into law bills that have passed through parliament, and some other technical functions relating to the Dail.

    There is, I believe, the possibility of someone using that position to create a constitutional crisis, by e.g. refusing to sign into law a particular bill that he/she objects to.

    But as for Wrath’s “wentilating issues”, presumably during the campaign, well.. it’s an expensive way to raise an issue.

    I agree that it’s always better to have an election when the possibility arises but, in this case, the question of whether it’s worth it – for the parties and for the people generally – is worth asking.

  • Davros

    How would Dana react to this ?

  • James

    If you guys don’t reuse/recycle Dana she will end up over here again. We don’t need any more sky pilots, even in Alabama, thank you.

    Our next President already talks to God. That the Almighty has shown fit to listen to George II and act in a manner fitting His sardonic sense of humor should convince even this shower that we really don’t need any more religious crazies on the left side of the Atlantic

    Bite the bullet lads, put the poor lady to work. How about Dana and Neil Horan as a duet, maybe as an opener for Daniel O’Donnell?

  • smcgiff

    Are_the_American_people_really_going_to_re-elect_W_as_President?

    It

  • Keith M

    As someone who supported Dana 7 years ago I think it is nothing short of shameful that she is finding it difficult to get a nomination. Here is a person who picked up almost 200k votes and polled over twice as many votes the Labour party candidate and since then she has had 5 successful years as an MEP. She is willing to fund her own campaign and there is no doubt that whether people like it or not she has genuine public support in her efforts to run again.

    As for McAleese, I didn’t think she was a good candidate 7 years ago, and nothing she has done has changed my mind. She is simply the latest (and much more expensive) version of the typically bland Fianna Fail President.

    It might however be worth re-electing her for the supreme irony of having a Nothern Irish nationalist being the first President to welcome the UK head of state to this country, given the divisivness which NI nationalists have caused in the relationship between the UK and the Republic.

    As for Eammon Ryan and Michael “Twee” Higgins; if these are McAleese’s only opponents then I’m spoiling my ballot by writing “Dana” on it.

  • smcgiff

    ‘As someone who supported Dana 7 years ago’

    You never cease to amaze me, Keith M.

    I

  • slackjaw

    That rules Bono out then, smcgiff.

  • Keith M

    smcgiff : putting 200k Dana voters down as some kind of fundalmentalists simply shows how out of touch you are with the Republic’s electorate. There were many reasons for voting for Dana; her bravery and determination in doing something had never done (using a cluase in the constition to break the big parties monopoly of running candidates), her “pro-life” stance (defining everyone who is pro-life as a “fundalmenalist” in this country would be simply ridiculus given the referendum results), her interest in rural issues such as the de-population of the west or (my reason) the fact that she had done a good job representing Ireland in the past.

    The role of President is largely ceremonial. It involves shaking lots or hands and portraying Ireland in a good light when visiting foreign countries. This is something Dana is eminently qualified to do. Where it does get tricky (signing potentially unconstitutional bills), the President has the Council of State and the Supreme Court to help her out. Even Robinson (a well respected lawyer) used the Suipreme Court rather than rejecting a potentially troublesome bill.

  • peteb

    The problem is, Keith, Rosemary would be asking her god whether she should sign a bill, regardless of its constitutional status, and not the Council or the Supreme Court of the State.

  • Davros

    This is something Dana is eminently qualified to do.

    If you want Ireland to be represented by a clich

  • smcgiff

    ‘That rules Bono out then, smcgiff.’

    YA, but he is Bono!

  • smcgiff

  • Keith M

    smcgiff maybe you can tell us why it is wrong to make moral judgements based on religeous beliefs. I ask because I was involved in a similar discussion on the US Presidential contest. People seem to tar Bush with the same “fundamentalist” tag. My point is that these people are simply living their lives with the aid of a reliegeous conviction and that they actually believe in and follow the rules of these religeons rather than taking the a la carte view which seems to currently be in vogue.

    I’m an agnostic, but I would prefer someone who’s morality was driven by honest conviction than someone paying lip service or who’s moral values and view of was right and wrong changed because of fashion, peer pressure or a desire conform to the perceived public “norm”.

    I take the diametrically opposite view to Dana on many moral issues (including abortion) but I respect her right to a different opinion and I know exactly where she stands on delicate issues. This is in marked contrast to the grandstanding activities of McAleese in taking communion in a CoI church.

  • peteb

    Keith

    Herein lies the crux of the problem that I have with Rosemary –

    You may “respect her right to a different opinion” but she does not respect your right.

  • maca

    “putting 200k Dana voters down as some kind of fundalmentalists simply shows how out of touch you are with the Republic’s electorate.”

    I would suggest Keith that only a certain percentage voted for Dana because of the issues you mentioned. I’d say a great deal voted for her simply because of her popularity as a singer not for the issues she stands for. The same people might as easily vote for wee Daniel were he to run for elections (god forbid).

    I’m with smcgiff, Bono for President!

  • Keith M

    peteb: “You may “respect her right to a different opinion” but she does not respect your right” and “The problem is, Keith, Rosemary would be asking her god whether she should sign a bill, regardless of its constitutional status, and not the Council or the Supreme Court of the State.”.

    Can you please te;l me where you picked up your qualification in mind reading. Dana was explicit in say that she would use the Council of State and/or the Supreme Court is the same way as Robinson had. The oath taken by the President means that she would be President for ALL the peoiple and not just those that agreed with her, and if anyone’s oath can be believed then it’s that of a believer.

  • smcgiff

    ‘smcgiff maybe you can tell us why it is wrong to make moral judgements based on religeous beliefs.’

    Can you not see the irony of a agnostic asking this question?

  • peteb

    Well there was this ad in the Sunday paper and it was only $5! ;o)

    Seriously, Keith, let’s just consider for a minute (in the manner of a “gedanken-experimenten”) whether the particular ‘believer’ we’re discussing (and we’ll leave to one side the extent and basis for those ‘beliefs’) would sign into law a bill that she ‘believed’ contradicted her own ‘beliefs’?

    I say she wouldn’t.. you disagree.

  • Davros

    Why was taking communion “grandstanding” ?

  • James

    “It

  • Young Irelander

    Keith M

    “As someone who supported Dana 7 years ago”

    Wow on Slugger you really do get ALL KINDS OF EVERYTHING.

    Sorry,I’ll just get my coat…..

  • maca

    YI, please refrain from making jokes in future. 😉