#SeanadRef will do little “to rebalance power within the Oireachtas or between the Executive and Legislature…”

I’ve already lodged my scepticism regarding the abolition of the Seanad. What’s surprising is that few on the Yes side seem to be marshalling much in the way of intellectual argument for its abolition.

In this clip of the Dail debate which introduced the referendum from Deputy Gerry Adams nails the obscurantism of the current government’s reform agenda, and describes it as a power grab

In addition to getting rid of sixty Seanadóirí, the Taoiseach plans to reduce the numbers of councils, councillors and Deputies. He has cut numbers but brought forward no real, positive, progressive change. He has done nothing to rebalance power between central and local government, nor has he done anything to rebalance power within the Oireachtas or between the Executive and Legislature. He risks missing an opportunity to create historic political reform and leaving behind a mess for a future Government to clear up. [emphasis added]

It was a decent pitch, and for Adams both passionate and well delivered. The trouble is it is also a pristine argument against abolition, when his own party’s Ard Chomhairle then subsequently decided to back the Government’s case in favour.

Now less than two months from the poll, latest opinion poll has the population pretty evenly split (40% to 39%) on the matter, in contrast with a clear 52% majority in favour of defenestration back in June

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