The ‘New’ Political Dynamic June 21, 2016Posted by irishelectionliterature in Irish Politics.
It was suggested that one of the reasons that the polls are so static since the election is that with ‘new politics’ the current Government won’t be able to take as many unpopular decisions as previous Governments.
Elements of that are surely true with the supposed role of FF as the party of all things to all people. There to keep FG in check ,all the while constantly looking over their shoulder to see what Sinn Fein and some others are at. On top of that the new Committee system is in theory meant to allow for more cross party agreement on legislation.
Would the last government have given a hoot about Bin charges? Would it have bothered reopening a few Garda Stations? Even looked again at Water Charges?…. I think we know the answer.
In a way this whole scenario could end up almost self defeating for some of the Opposition parties , but especially Fianna Fail. The old excuse of ‘they had a majority’ is gone to possibly be replaced with ‘why didn’t you do something about it?’. The more they intervene on policy and decisions, the more they could be expected to do so.
The FF strategy (aside from not willing to allow the membership a vote on coalition with FG which would have certainly been defeated) of supporting the government in certain votes was I’m sure delivered hoping that they would get credit for the good things done by the FG government and then FG would get blamed for the bad things done by the government. FF would have also hoped to get credit for forcing changes to various Government policies.
It’s a fine balance though between using influence and being seen to make the decisions and with the public (and reportedly many TD’s) unfamiliar with doing Parliamentary business in this style it may backfire.
With much of the opposition benches talking about the FG/FF deal or the FG/FF Government, FF getting Seanad nominations and some other arrangements, FF are trying not to get tied too close to FG… but every veto, change or indeed anything insisted upon by FF could drive them closer in the public eye. The opposite of the intention.
So where they hope the supply and demand deal would be the best of both worlds for FF… it could easily end up the worst of both worlds.