Amid all the hyperbole, nonsense, emotional outbursts and genuine, justified resentment that has poured out of people’s mouths over the past week, the one sort of unifying thread for the opposition was “Election, election, election!”
When should a general election be called? If you’re most of the people who aren’t members of Fianna Fail or the Greens, today.
But while I believe that a General Election is a necessity, and in the not too distant future (it’s increasingly implausible to defend the legitimacy of the current government and I won’t try), with the current drama over Irish interest rates, the strength of the currency and all such economic matters going up and down whenever anyone seems to even mentions Ireland, it would be better for the nations economic interests for an election to be deferred…just a bit.
Bear in mind, that if we could somehow change the rules and vote FG/Lab into power tomorrow, nothing will actually have changed. The IMF will still be hovering, maybe justifiably, the budget will still require cuts, nobody will be happy.
So, let Fianna Fail and the Greens get out their four-year plan, crash and burn in Donegal (O’ Domhnaill is toast, and I regret ever suggesting otherwise) and barely pass the budget.
At that point it’ll be early December. If the budget fails, so be it, but if not, an election called then would involve an election season during Christmas. Oh joy. And of course, fine weather guaranteed for polling day, the sort of weather that will, inevitably, keep people away from the booths.
No. If its going to be called and its looking increasingly likely that it will in the not too distant future (this government is holding together to pass a budget, it has no long-term plan), let it be in early/mid January, for a polling day in mid February. Better weather, not so much hysteria dominating the discussion (I hope), and having it earlier won’t change anything anyway.