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Posts Tagged ‘seanad’

Fine Gael’s New Politics and the Abolition of the Seanad

March 24, 2010 Leave a comment

Fine Gael’s New Politics proposals include a proposal to abolish Seanad Éireann and move towards a unicameral system of parliament. In this post I want to express some concerns, based firmly in a human rights perspective, about this proposal. First of all we should note that the Seanad, or upper house, is by no means a perfect institution. In fact, there are many things that are objectionable about it including the means by which it is populated. However, for the reasons that I outline below, I am not convinced that abolition of the Seanad is the way forward or that Fine Gael have made out a strong enough case for this kind of momentous constitutional change. I have identified five primary claims in New Politics for the abolition of the Seanad and I consider these claims, and their merits, after the jump.

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Constitutional Revolution 3.5: Fine Gael Debate Today

March 20, 2010 1 comment

This afternoon, the Fine Gael National Conference will debate the party leadership’s proposals for political and constitutional reform in Ireland. The reforms, which we discussed previously (here, here and here) would include:

– the abolition of the Seanad;

– a new “list” system for selecting 15 TDs;

– new constitutional recognition given to four Dáil committees;

– reduction of the President’s term of office from seven years to five;

– the introduction of a public petition mechanism for the Dáil.

Expect to see lots on this in the press in the coming days and some more substantive analysis here at HRinI once we have the full Fine Gael proposals to hand.

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