Saturday, May 19, 2007

Are PD Chickens coming home to FF roost?

Friday's Irish Times headline "Kenny scores on confidence and Ahern on detail" tends to support Fianna Fail's assertion that Bertie Ahern’s greater command of the detail in the "Leader’s TV Debate" is evidence that he’s the more suited to the role of Taoiseach after next Thursday’s election.

However, on inspection, this may prove to be something of a double-edged sword, for it also puts him squarely in the dock for the many deficiencies and failures of his government over the past 10 years in office, at a time of unprecedented national wealth. The defence of “I didn’t understand the implications or shortcomings of the policy, M’Lord” is now firmly denied him.

Attempts to distance FF from their partner PD efforts in the areas of Health and Justice are now well and truly defused. Indeed, it would be hard to find the FF DNA in either of these policy areas. You can be sure that FF would be much more comfortable with Labour as a coalition partner in matters of policy (though less happy about the number of cabinets seats they‘d have to yield to a much bigger coalition partner).

This point was at the core of Eamon Dunphy’s robust rejection of a sympathy vote for Bertie Ahern on RTE’s Late late show last night. Bertie Ahern has presided over the disproportionate imposition of PD right-wing policies over the past 10 years and he and his party should now be made face the consequences, for good or ill.

Are the skies now darkening with the wings of chickens coming home to roost?

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