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The background of political candidates July 30, 2021

Posted by WorldbyStorm in Uncategorized.
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Useful IT Politics podcast from earlier in the month talking to Dr Theresa Reidy about the latest edition of How Ireland Voted, this being the election in 2020. To be honest that election was the least interesting aspect of the programme. More intriguing was what her analysis demonstrated about some potential structural changes in terms of who is being elected. She pointed to the fact that with the rise of SF and other parties of the left – notable was how she brackets SF as a left party, not controversial for most of us, though some won’t agree, no doubt – has seen the very high concentration of people in ‘lower and higher professions’ in the Dáil and she pointed to FF, FG and the Labour Party ad tending to draw their candidates from the professions, business backgrounds and ‘particularly FF/FG from the farming community’.


Whereas she notes that ‘a considerable diversification, manual occupations, people working in retail, generally speaking a broader selection of people coming into politics and the dominance of professions is being diluted over time… farmers have really dwindled down to a small group’. And she notes ‘a lot of the farmers are part time farmers’.

She looks at the 2000s as a turning point where politics and the backgrounds become more diverse and she argues politics is becoming more diverse and reflecting the society better.

That said she noted that for FG and the GP they still draw most of their candidates from the professions.

One other point she notes is that family dynasty’s are beginning to fade a bit – strikingly FF/FG up to a third of candidates are from families which have been long represented, though she notes that in some newer parties one is seeing relatives who are simultaneously in politics. It will be telling to see how that develops.

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1. Paul Culloty - July 30, 2021

One point that all parties will have to take into account in future local and national elections is how to convince New Irish candidates to engage in the political system – as Adrian Kavanagh notes, just eight of the 949 county and city councillors elected in 2019 were born outside of Ireland. Perhaps as dual citizenship becomes an increasing trend, such civic involvement will rise in tandem.

https://adriankavanaghelections.org/2019/05/28/the-2019-local-elections-a-geographers-overview/#more-17486

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