Gilmore comes out from the shadows over O’Donoghue…

The quiet that greeted Labour leader Eamon Gilmore when he made his big play in the Dail yesterday and set the agenda for the John O’Donoghue’s rather hurried and undignified departure from Office of Ceann Comhairle. In one deft move (having given Fianna Fail leader Brian Cowen enough rope to hang himself with) this intervention lead to the issuing of JOD’s announcement of his pending resignation at just after 10 last night… Forget the rights and wrongs of the reasons for his going (and there is a legitimate defence to be made on the CC’s part), and look for a moment at the way Fianna Fail’s tried and tested stonewalling of the Opposition broke down. The power of Gilmore’s moment arises not from the call itself, but the refusal of the Taoiseach to deal with an issue concerning Dail Eireann (ie the legislature, not the executive) in a multilateral, off piste manner… Offside and his only remaining party sponsor politically unmanned, O’Donoghue had no option but to walk… Leaving even Fine Gael playing catch-up…Adds: As bootman points out below, Sinn Fein were the first to call for the Taoiseach’s in a letter which was sent directly and privately on Monday, and then press conferenced yesterday morning…

Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty