Party building July 21, 2016Posted by WorldbyStorm in Uncategorized.
Interesting overview of the Social Democrats in the Phoenix this week that focusses on Gary Gannon. He has had an interesting political journey from involvement with the Gregory Group to independent, through a certain political homelessness and on to the SDs. He’s certainly thrived in the latter context. It notes that he was very very close to taking the seat in Dublin Central at the election but that events wrested from his grasp more or less at the last moment.
One has to wonder how matters will go at the next election. On paper he should be in a strong position to contest, depending of course whether Maureen O’Sullivan goes forward again. Yet, with one seat clearly locked in for SF, and another for FG, the rise of Fianna Fáil as an electoral force once more must have people wondering whether Ind/Others are going to lose out.
In that respect one has to wonder too was election 2016 a sort of interim election where – as with 2011, a tranche of smaller parties and independents made hay while FF was out of the picture, but where at subsequent elections with FF reconsolidating those same Ind/Others will be squeezed out.
Now I’m not too pessimistic. I think good reps, Paul Murphy, Joan Collins, Gino Kenny, and so on will retain seats – or are more than likely to. But almost unquestionably others will not, at least on current polling figures. And the issue of incumbency raises its head. For the last two election incumbents – particularly FF (and then LP) were much weaker or in some instances left the field entirely. This time around it will be different. This may assist those in position, but those contesting to enter the Dáil will, almost certainly be in a less good position.
I don’t think this is game over for the Social Democrats, or indeed anyone. The forward march of FF may falter. SF may weaken as FF strengthens. There’s always breaches in defences which can be utilised. But am I wrong in thinking that a moment may have passed, that gains may be smaller than would have been hoped for?
How do others see this?