Justice Minister Alan Shatter has agreed to attend an Oireachtas committee on Wednesday to discuss the GSOC bugging controversy. This may seem a concession, but Mr Shatter’s incomplete Dáil statement last week makes any other response impossible. Had he decided not to attend, that would have been unacceptable and thrown more fuel on a blazing fire.
It would also put Taoiseach Enda Kenny in a very unenviable position. He has squandered considerable political capital in this affair and the prospect of one of his cabinet refusing to discuss it with an Oireachtas committee would have left him with few alternatives — either order Mr Shatter to attend or remove him from office.
This, however, just means that the first hurdle has been negotiated. Unless Mr Shatter’s performance is far more measured, balanced, informative, and plausible, and indicates that he is open to even considering the terrible vista of garda involvement, then Mr Kenny may still face a very difficult decision.
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