One last link-dump as we turn into the home straight of GE16.
Body language during Monday’s debate was a common topic of discussion, with everyone commenting on the overly-emphasised hand movements of the participants. Of course, that can go too far, and the suggestion put to Joan Burton that her movements could cost her party votes was both absurd and sexist.
Another useful fact checking exercise from the folks over at The Journal for the same debate. It’s a shame the national broadcaster can’t bring itself to offer a similar analysis of promises and pledges.
The Kildare North candidates gave brief audio statements to KFM the other day, that has finally been updated to include everyone. The only scraps of stuff from a few of the Independents are there, while you might find yourself bemused by Bernard Durkan’s 28 second offering (the max is 60).
An interesting letter from an ignored constituent, who would really like to talk to a candidate. I can relate: numerous candidates in Kildare North promised they would visit my area, through Twitter and e-mail exchanges, and then either didn’t, or didn’t leave any literature if they did and found no one home, which would be quite strange. At the end of the day, I have no evidence that a person after my vote actually wanted to talk to me in person about it, and I’m seeing claims like this all over the place, as if there is a general downward trend in active canvassing nationwide. Is social media taking over? It might be a bit early for that.
When the history of this portion of Ireland’s existence comes to be written, and the chroniclers of the future ponder what to write about “parish pump Independents”, this emerging state of affairs in Kerry will be right up there. It would be smart enough voting for Kerry in a way: in a hung Dail, having double the number of potentially kingmaking Independents would be a big influence on deals to be made to the benefit of the constituency. We can talk the morality of having two close blood relatives as representatives for the same constituency, the mockery of national level issues that the Healy-Raes’ constant success represents, or the intensely creepy nature of that “dynasty” in Kerry, but the people of the Kingdom will make their choice.
And, lastly, as we go into those final few days of electioneering, the talk of potential coalition groupings continues to grow and grow. I feel Labour are really chancing their arm here: there’s precious little indication that the Soc Dems would be even faintly interested in holding up the Fine Gael/Labour duo, who they disagree with so fundamentally on economic issues. I might be proven wrong, but the Soc Dems don’t seem like the type to immediately jump into bed with the first prospective government to come along, much like the Greens. I don’t think the same for Renua, but who knows how many TD’s they’ll have. In the end, there is no likely combination, based on current polling numbers, that seems able to form a functioning government.
Five days to go!