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Any hope of a stable government has been lost, with the rejection by the Labour Party leadership of a minority ‘rainbow’ government and the outright refusal of Fianna Fáil to contemplate a grand coalition with Fine Gael.
Those who advocate the Danish model of minority governance, as the leader of Fianna Fáil does, are merely making a virtue out of their political necessity — the high priests of Ballymagash now want to lead us to the promised land of Borgen.
Notwithstanding the absurd positions of their party rivals, the Fine Gael leadership remain ever willing to stand in the ‘bearna baol’ and attempt to cobble together an understanding with Fianna Fáil, and a programme of government, with whatever combination of independents will sign up for a minimum of support for three Budgets.
It is hard to see how the electorate will ever thank Fine Gael for forming a weak government with such unlikely partners.
The absolute loyalty of Fine Gael’s grassroots is assumed by a party leadership that stands collectively responsible for the devastating defeats during the local and general elections. Knowing that they would be exposed to the wrath of the membership, if the party returned to opposition, they are like the desperate man at a ballroom, who asks every single woman for a dance, as he cannot face leaving alone.
This process of government-formation is fast-becoming the political equivalent of ‘death by a thousand cuts’ for Fine Gael.
The party’s grassroots deserve much better.
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