They’re at it again.
Fianna Fáil spokespeople are being trotted out this morning across the airwaves to make the case that now would be a very bad time for an Irish general election, and that it would be better for everyone if the Government – which Fianna Fáil says is useless – stayed in office a little while longer:
Fianna Fail finance spokesperson @mmcgrathtd similarly says "I can see huge problems for Ireland if we go down the road of a pre-Christmas election".
He says "this is about a number of Fine Gael ministers getting out of their job, because they're sinking". #iestaff
— Fiachra Ó Cionnaith (@Ocionnaith) October 30, 2019
Is that clear? Fine Gael’s ministers are useless and sinking, but it is very important to keep them in office. Why? Because voting in winter is hard, or something.
Then of course we have Colm Keaveney, a former Fianna Fáil TD, coming out with this nonsense:
Based on the 2016 epic government formation to achieve supply & confidence are we to risk been without a government for The Commons to pass a WAB?
What happens if Boris needs the DUP and Ireland is swamped in government formations?
— Colm Keaveney (@Colm_Keaveney) October 30, 2019
What exactly is the Irish Government supposed to do in the event that there are negotiations in London between the Conservatives and the DUP? Write a good luck card?
Fianna Fáil is in an extraordinary position.
It opposes the Fine Gael government, but has facilitated keeping it in office. One could just about justify that on the basis that the country needs some form of stability, and cannot have elections every other week.
But we’re now at a point where it has been more than three years since the last election. The Taoiseach was not elected by the people – he is implementing a mandate and a manifesto won by Enda Kenny. The threat of a no-deal Brexit, the beloved excuse for all sides to avoid an election, is off the table until at least January the 31st – more than enough time for an election and a new Government here.
So why don’t Fianna Fáil want an election, and a chance to govern?
One can only surmise it is because they do not believe they can win that election.
As such, we have the bizarre spectacle of the main opposition party explaining to voters that the Government is destroying the health service, adding to a housing crisis, messing up every major project, and threatening the future of the country – but that we should leave them at it until the weather improves.
With enemies like that, Leo Varadkar doesn’t need any friends, at all.