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Thread: The 2016 GE thread

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    The 2016 GE thread

    It seems all that remains is for the Labour Conference to be held, with Enda then going to the Áras on Monday/Tuesday week. It certainly seems the oddest election I can remember, as even in 2011, interest was maintained through how evenly or otherwise FG and Labour would divide their FF gains, but it would now be a shock of epic proportions if FG didn't comfortably finish as the leading party.

    Fine Gael:

    Still on course with the Noonan Plan of meeting the requirements of the "comfortable" 30% of the population, even if that necessarily prevents them from growing support. Between rural farmers and urban professionals will consolidate their support base. Prediction: 58 seats.

    Fianna Fáil:

    Even on the same vote as 2011, would gain seats through better candidate management. Uncomfortably fenced between centre-left economics and conservative social policies, but many rural constituencies remain two-party areas. Prediction: 32 seats.

    Sinn Féin:

    On course to fulfil one part of their "Project" by becoming the leading party of the Irish left. Support notably declining in the last 12 months, but rather than the Provo legacy, may be outflanked in future elections by the AAA-PBP and the Soc Dems. Prediction: 24 seats.

    Labour:

    A real existential battle for survival, as the party faces not one, but three challengers for control of the Irish left. Have recovered slightly from the nadir of 2014, so some of the leadership may survive, but the long-term prospects for Labour appear terminal. Prediction: 12 ​seats.

    AAA-PBP:

    Have managed to claw some semblance of unity out of the wreckage of the ULA, but the "Judean Peoples' Front" tag remains ever relevant. Have failed to really tap into the Right2Water movement, and remain largely confined to Dublin. Prediction: 6 seats.

    Social Democrats:

    Increasingly look set to be confined to be filed under "missed opportunity" - enjoyed popular appeal at launch, but have shown no organisational or marketing nous, with little progress six months later. Would still be a shock if any of the founders lost, however. Prediction: 3 seats.

    Renua:

    If the SDs have wasted a gap in the market, then Renua are the PDs Nua that no-one particularly asked for. Even FF have stolen their moral clothes, and unless they enter Government, it's difficult to see a long-term future for the party. Prediction: 2 seats.

    Independents & Others:

    Healy-Rae and Lowry will be returned in their respective constituencies, as will most of Ross's Independent Alliance. Eamon Ryan is 50/50 in terms of being the only Green returned. Prediction: 21 seats.

    All in all, looks like the Coalition will have the SDs and Renua bolted on for 75 seats, with some independents tapped up to reach the magic 80.
    Last edited by culloty82; 24/01/2016 at 7:42 PM.

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    Capped Player nigel-harps1954's Avatar
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    You're off your head if you think FG will walk the election like that.

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    Seasoned Pro NeverFeltBetter's Avatar
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    I decided a while ago that I couldn't vote, #1 at least, for any of the four mainstays, or the hard left conglomerates/independents. But I'm lucky that I have a strong "other" option in my constituency - Catherine Murphy - to look to.

    In terms of pure political spectatorship, it's fascinating. Odds on it'll be awkward after the vote. Can certainly envision a cobbled together beast of FG/L/Renua/Like minded independents getting over the line, unless the FF/SF standoffishness is all talk (and they get the harder left to play ball).
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    Quote Originally Posted by nigel-harps1954 View Post
    You're off your head if you think FG will walk the election like that.
    Historically, FG/Lab get in when FF screw up the economy and things are so bad they have to introduce unpopular measures and then get kicked back out of office at the next election, with the junior partner suffering the most (i.e. Labour). This time the same has happened but they managed to survive until some small bit of light appeared at the end of the tunnel and we didn't have to join the Greeks in penury, but whether that light is enough to see FG maintain a lot of the gains is the big imponderable. Labour are screwed. Interesting election ahead.
    Forget about the performance or entertainment. It's only the result that matters.

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    Director dahamsta's Avatar
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    True, we just sway back and forth between FG and FF in Ireland, I'd be very surprised if we don't see a big increase in FF seats. I'll be horrified, but not surprised.

    I won't be voting Labour again for a good long while to come. They don't deserve to call themselves left-wing any more.

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    Capped Player SkStu's Avatar
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    As someone who has lost touch with Irish party/populist politics especially over the last few years, can someone explain to me how on earth a party like FF will ever get as many seats as that back? I know history runs deep with the big two but really the damage they did to our country should see them in penance for more than one GE cycle. I think it shows us to be a very shallow electorate (maybe every electorate is) that deserves poor governance.

    Also, the little bit I read and hear from folks back home tends to paint FG as the great Satan. Beyond making cuts that were needed and tough decisions that were needed where does that loathing come from? Is it old school FFers? Is it warranted? Is it that they let banks off the hook and foisted the recovery 100% onto the people? Didn't the people have some penance to pay too?

    I don't know - as I said im out of touch and so my thoughts and questions may seem a little pointed/insensitive - not intentional, just curious for the opinions of the group.

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    Like the Fonz. Only a dog. Mr A's Avatar
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    The outgoing government may well be more kindly judged by history than they are currently. They inherited a country in a dangerous mess and things have turned around reasonably quickly. But in the details they made a lot of mistakes, and I fear we're on the way to repeating the same old mistakes as auction politics kicks in. Labour get a kicking because they're seen as leftist- but I've always seen them as economically centrist but socially liberal. They were by far the smaller party in government and would rightly have a lot less influence- but for some reason in this country we always seem to expect the tail to wag the dog.

    Narrow the tax base again as the resistance to property taxes and water charges are huge. Plus we're back to far too reliance on two pillar banks- and AIB especially has a history of going rogue. And on justice FG are far too wedded to the status quo- how an insider was appointed commissioner after all the shenanigans in the Gardai I'll never understand. Opportunities for real and lasting reform have been missed on various front in the past couple of years- but we're in markedly better shape than some of the other bailed out countries.

    Anyhow, if I have a point it's that things are in a very messy and unpredictable state. It's going to be a fascinating campaign.

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    Seasoned Pro NeverFeltBetter's Avatar
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    I'm not sure if the Irish electorate is especially amnesiac when it comes to the past sins of political parties. It certainly seems that way sometimes. Fianna Fail just have that core of loyal voters, who even voted for them in 2011 (nearly 1 in 5 voters), so, you know, would always vote for them. Place yourself in opposition to an austerity government, and eventually other voters will start gravitating towards you, regardless of whether the austerity is your fault to begin with.

    It helps that they have, by necessity, had to put in lots of new faces for candidacy I'm sure (for example, in mine, two sitting FF's TD's lost out in 2011, two new candidates, only elected as Councillors in 2014, are running now).
    Author of Never Felt Better (History, Film Reviews).

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    Good poll for the smaller parties tonight:

    FG 29% (-1)
    SF 19% (0)
    FF 17% (-2)
    Ind 16% (+1)
    Lab 10% (+1)
    AAA-PBP 3% (0)
    Green 3% (+1)
    SD 2% (+1)
    Renua 1% (-1)

    All in all, looks like the larger parties are cannibalising one another, while local factors will see AAA, SDs and Renua retain their current seats.

    Seats according to Adrian Kavanagh:

    FG 56
    FF 27
    SF 25
    Lab 14
    Oth 36
    Last edited by culloty82; 30/01/2016 at 7:44 PM.

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    International Prospect bennocelt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by culloty82 View Post
    Good poll for the smaller parties tonight:

    FG 29% (-1)
    SF 19% (0)
    FF 17% (-2)
    Ind 16% (+1)
    Lab 10% (+1)
    AAA-PBP 3% (0)
    Green 3% (+1)
    SD 2% (+1)
    Renua 1% (-1)

    All in all, looks like the larger parties are cannibalising one another, while local factors will see AAA, SDs and Renua retain their current seats.

    Seats according to Adrian Kavanagh:

    FG 56
    FF 27
    SF 25
    Lab 14
    Oth 36
    Yeah agree, did my own version going by PP odds, and a bit here and there.....

    I have FG at 59.....perhaps 61
    But I really see Labour struggling to get even 10, and PP have them not to as well (8/11), in fact they have Burton not to get her seat at the moment.....which is mad
    I have FF at 32
    and I do think SF will do well, definitely get over 23.5 (4/5)
    I think it will be FG with Lab and Renua, SD, and the FG Independents.

    R Troy, next FF leader at 18/1? All excited in Mullingar about this, even if he is a total c.......

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    Seasoned Pro NeverFeltBetter's Avatar
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    If Burton loses her seat, she's obligated to resign the party leadership. In the event that it's an apocalyptic <10 scenario as well, I can easily imagine the new diminished Labour PP deciding to abandon government and go back to left wing opposition.
    Author of Never Felt Better (History, Film Reviews).

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    Howlin seems certain to hang on, more so than Kelly at any rate, so he might fall into the leadership by default...

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    Hard to disagree, depressing but probably true.

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    I genuinely haven't decided who'll get my number 1. It was most likely to be Donnelly, but his hypocrisy over giving out about auction politics and going on about keeping a wider tax base, whilst at the same time saying the Social Democrats will ditch water charges has really disappointed me.

    I think this type of stuff will come up more and more in the campaign and may sway more people between their various options. Potentially a very interesting campaign and election!
    If you attack me with stupidity, I'll be forced to defend myself with sarcasm.

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    Should be noted that only 79 is required for a majority this time.

    I think FG voters are very happy with the performance of their government. They pretty much got what they voted (bar a couple of social issues that Labour managed to slide past them). Their numbers will stay fairly similar

    Still a small chance that Labour's vote in Dublin will make them the 3rd biggest party there after FG and SF
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    GE 26 feb....let the false promises commence!

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    The Cheeto God Real ale Madrid's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Macy View Post
    I genuinely haven't decided who'll get my number 1. It was most likely to be Donnelly, but his hypocrisy over giving out about auction politics and going on about keeping a wider tax base, whilst at the same time saying the Social Democrats will ditch water charges has really disappointed me.
    To be fair to Donnelly and the SD's on this issue - he makes the point about how much it is costing to Charge people and with the anarchy over payments and the cost of collection, it is not nearly enough to cover to required investment. Why not have a fully functioning Water system that is fit for purpose first, make it a public body, and then charge people - seems like a logical stance to me.

    http://stephendonnelly.ie/the-uncomf...t-irish-water/
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    You should do a Poll and see what LOI people will vote, i know it won't be FG.FF or Labour for me
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    Quote Originally Posted by Real ale Madrid View Post
    To be fair to Donnelly and the SD's on this issue - he makes the point about how much it is costing to Charge people and with the anarchy over payments and the cost of collection, it is not nearly enough to cover to required investment. Why not have a fully functioning Water system that is fit for purpose first, make it a public body, and then charge people - seems like a logical stance to me.
    No, not buying it - you could fix the system/ organisation and keep the expanded tax base that he wants to maintain in all other areas. It's just as much populist "auction politics" as reducing USC that he's so against, in my opinion.

    It's not the only thing in recent months he's come out with that has been hypocritical. No different from most politicians, but he has set himself up as offering a different perspective, and he really hasn't lived up to it for me as the election has approached. He's just more of the same.
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    The Cheeto God Real ale Madrid's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Macy View Post
    No, not buying it - you could fix the system/ organisation and keep the expanded tax base that he wants to maintain in all other areas. It's just as much populist "auction politics" as reducing USC that he's so against, in my opinion.
    Well it sounds like you are damned if you do and you are damned if you don't so. He puts forward a pretty logical argument - stop installing water meters, stop charging people and stop giving them money for nothing (i.e. - conversation grant plus the administration of same) and use that money to add to what you invest in an ailing system. When the system is fit for purpose, and becomes a public body then look at rates. If you are for water charges then you are accused of overburdening people, if you are against them you are populist. I’ve no issue with paying water charges – I have an issue with why they were introduced ( paying off unsecured bond-holders ) but they are necessary in the long term. I have no objection to SD’s putting forward this argument especially in the manner he does. You won't get that from a FF/FG manifesto thats for sure ( at least you didn't in the past ).
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