Election Rule #2: Don’t get backed into a corner

DEFENSIVE POLITICS: Politicians find themselves forced to take a course of action and then can regret it later. It happens on policy, resignations, constituency matters. It’s now a long way until Spring and there is a danger that if people are giving credit for the budget now, it will be but a memory in the new year.

The Legend of Enda of the (wild whild) Wesht…

TALL TALES: Enda’s ‪#‎armygate‬ saga has had pundits of all hues falling over themselves to explain, or even excuse, how and why An Taoiseach went to a recent EPP gathering in Madrid and told a story about the Irish Defences Forces being on standby to protect ATMs back in 2012.

Election Rule #1: Don’t get carried away

As part of a new weekly series I will be looking at the lessons we should learn in politics from now until the election. Lesson one is – Never get carried away. Politics is a game of hype. You tell everyone you are absolutely brilliant and that the other fella is the devil incarnate. Due to the adversarial nature of politics there is often little room for being fair. This is all well and good but you must be careful …

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Enda Kenny making some odd gestures during budget debate

From our colleagues at the Journal.ie and video from Gavan Reilly. The gestures of Enda Kenny whilst Mary-Lou McDonald was speaking during the budget debate caught peoples attention. I did some research on hand gestures and what we can subconsciously mean when we do these things according to this body language expert it clenching your fists can mean; It can signify unyieldingness, like a more intense version of palms facing down. Clenched fists with thumbs tucked-in indicate discomfort. This person …

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Kenny: The General Election will be in Spring 2016

Well there we go Taoiseach @EndaKennyTD tells #Twip my intention has always been to have the general election in 2016 and I see nothing to change that — The Week in Politics (@rtetwip) October 11, 2015 If the coalition does hold it will be the first ever Fine Gael-Labour coalition to serve a full five year term in Irish history. Also Sinn Fein will have to fight two elections within weeks of each other as the Northern Assembly elections will …

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Has Enda made the calculation that taking on Sinn Fein is more important than devolution?

We are fast approaching the next Irish general election. Down in the polls at the moment, Kenny is determined to become the first ever Fine Gael leader in Irish history to win two consecutive terms in office. This will go nicely with his claim to have led the party to its biggest ever victory at the last election (in seat count anyway). Often living in Northern Ireland we forget that we are not really a big issue in Southern politics …

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Fianna Fail-Could they bounce back at the next election?

Fianna Fail, the natural governing party of Ireland. One of the most successful parties in Europe, second only to the Swedish Social Democrats for both electoral success and length of time in power. All of this changed in 2011 as the party suffered a heavy defeat following three years of recession and austerity. With the exception of 2013, the party has polled at around 19-23% and in the local elections they won more councillors than any other party in the …

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What is Sinn Fein’s path to victory next year in the Irish general election?

Jonny’s post about when Enda Kenny might call the election got me thinking about just how the next election might pan out for each of the parties. The next election is such a hard one to call as the old certainties have gone out the window. Not since 1926 have there been so many unknown variables in the contest that could impact the outcome. The rise of Sinn Fein as a serious force in Irish politics has thrown everything up …

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Why Enda must aim for a 2016 Election Date

Predicting elections is a tricky business. The pressure of government sees events overtake plans very quickly. Deciding when to go to the country has always been a holy grail of strategy for serving Taoisigh. There are many examples of getting it wrong and still many more of where a government collapse takes the decision away from a Taoiseach. Enda Kenny will have to try plan things though. All things going well the ultimate decision lies with him. There is one …

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1916 Centenary – Cherishing All the Children Equally?

Yesterday we saw the government reveal more detailed plans regarding the official commemoration of the centenary of the 1916 Easter Rising. Plans to mark this key event in the history of the state include a major exhibition of 1916 archival material at the National Museum of Ireland at Collins Barracks and series of commemorative events, including a parade from Dublin Castle to Parnell Square on Easter Sunday 2016 and a special state reception for the 1916 relatives. In order to …

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Cameron and Kenny go home

From the BBC, David Cameron and Enda Kenny go home after talks failed to reach a deal. There was an offer on the table of spending powers that would amount to £1 billion over five years. However, the reaction from Sinn Fein was not very encouraging for Cameron as the Education Minister, John O’Dowd labelled Cameron a “penny pinching accountant” and the party president, Gerry Adams had this to say 2 Govts exiting after most amateurish ham fisted episode I …

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Adams: The Taoiseach should now show the courage of his convictions by resigning, calling a General Election and letting the people decide.

Following the Irish Water saga there is mounting speculation that Ireland might be heading to the polls in 2015. Writing for Slugger, Sinn Fein President, Gerry Adams TD argues that it’s time for the Taoiseach to go the country and let the people decide the future economic direction of the country. The Fine Gael/Labour coalition Government is in deep crisis. As each day passes it is clearer that it will struggle to stay in office for its full term. The …

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The Taoiseach: “I will ask them the question that the Deputy will not answer.”

There was a clear attempt at political revisionism this week, as the Sinn Féin president, Gerry Adams, TD, sought to, as Anthony McIntyre put it, “claw back lost ground” following an “unprecedented” Leaders’ questions in the Dáil on Wednesday 22 Oct – aided and abetted by interventions from the legal representative of four of those accused, and acquitted, in the Maíria Cahill case. [added in-line link] This is the position the Sinn Fein president attempted to end the week with “I further understand that Peter …

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Ireland & Europe; Political leaders need to start thinking outside the box

As we are all consumed with the Adams/Cahill story, it is hard for some other pieces of news to gain traction. One big story that was missed in the media was the revelation that due to the revision in how the European Union calculates the contributions of member states to the coffers of the Union that Ireland will now be required to pay an additional €157 million. Before you start coming at me with a “but Ireland, got huge amounts …

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Latest SBP/REDC poll in the South-Sinn Fein still second

The first opinion poll taken in the South since the BBC Spotlight programme was conducted on Monday-Wednesday of the past week. Here are the results Fine Gael-26% (-2) Sinn Fein-20% (-3%) Fianna Fail-18% (nc) Labour-8% (nc) Inds/Oths-28% (+5) Overall, Sinn Fein will be happy with this poll as in other bad times for the party such as the Northern Bank robbery and the McCartney murder, the party’s support halved in just 9 weeks. This 3% drop is more stable and …

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Adams: “Sinn Féin has not engaged in any cover-up of abuse at any level of this party.”

Speaking at a party candidate event earlier today in Belfast, Sinn Fein President, Gerry Adams TD made another statement about the Cahill case; below are his remarks to members of his party The allegations of Maíria Cahill have been at the centre of the media and political system North and South, in recent times. Over the course of the past week Maíria Cahill has made serious allegations against myself and named Sinn Féin members. While I am very mindful of the …

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“Assertion in blog is shameful and cruel” – McDonald

Sinn Féin deputy leader Mary Lou McDonald has posted a twitter response to a blog circulating on social media which describes Maíria Cahill’s alleged rape ordeal as “a year long sexual liaison”. The blog describes the alleged rapist as a man “whom many a 16-year-old would likely fancy”. The blog prompted a twitter question from  Maíria Cahill to Ms. McDonald who replied two hours later. The anonymous blogger who reportedly resides in West Belfast and calls himself “Ruaidri Ua Conchobai” …

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Cartoon – The Double Irish

, Brian SpencerBrian is a writer, artist, political cartoonist and legal blogger. Actively tweeting from @brianjohnspencr. More information here: http://www.brianjohnspencer.com/ www.brianjohnspencer.com/

Cartoon – The scalper

Brian SpencerBrian is a writer, artist, political cartoonist and legal blogger. Actively tweeting from @brianjohnspencr. More information here: http://www.brianjohnspencer.com/ www.brianjohnspencer.com/