Minister for the Environment Alan Kelly said: “Some comments made previously earlier on in the week by a colleague of mine were unnecessary and probably silly, to be frank - you know, lecturing people as regards the consequences of what happens if they don’t pass this legislation.” Photograph: Eric Luke/The Irish Times

The Government had a comfortable Seanad majority of 31 to 26 in the first vote on the Water Services Bill, with the support of four Independents.Senat(...)

Cathaoirleach  Paddy Burke of Fine Gael holds the casting vote in the Seanad. Photograph: Eric Luke

The Government looks increasingly likely to win the crucial Seanad vote on the Water Services Bill this evening. At least three of the Independent Sen(...)

Labour leader Joan Burton: the vote was “a mark of the progress that has taken place in this country in recent years and decades, and indicates the extent to which attitudes to lesbian and gay people have changed”.

The same-sex marriage referendum, as well as the vote to reduce the age for presidential candidates and a pending Dáil byelection, is likely to be hel(...)

Marriage Equality: The Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (BAI) has said that it has not issued any direction requiring that broadcasters must automatically ‘balance’ a discussion with an opposing view. Photograph: Getty

The Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (BAI) has said that it has not issued any direction requiring that broadcasters must automatically “balance” a d(...)

Katherine Zappone: said every Senator could highlight statistics in their own community, and there were 173 people homeless in the South County Dublin Council area

More than 160 homeless people are living “in the shadow of Leinster House”, the Seanad heard following the death of homeless man John Corrie (43) on (...)

Ivana Bacik said she hoped colleagues across the House would join her in condemning the violence and acts of criminality that arose during certain protests over the weekend and since. Photograph: Fergal Phillips

Fianna Fáil Senator Ned O’Sullivan described as “heavy-handed thuggery’’ the treatment of the Taoiseach and Tánaiste at public protests.“I do not car(...)

A screengrab from a video claiming to show water protesters surrounding the Tánaiste’s car in Tallaght yesterday.

Two gardaí were injured during a two-hour stand-off with water charge protesters who blocked the Tánaiste’s car in Jobstown in Tallaght yesterday. A G(...)

Maureen O’Sullivan: “There is a new drug on the streets now called ice, and it’s ravaging communities. The people working to help addicts and their families need more resources, not fewer.” Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Sit-in bumps Maureen O’Sullivan off the agenda When Mary Lou McDonald threw Gerry’s teddy bears out of the Sinn Féin pram on Thursday, she did no favo(...)

Hot water: Irish Water chief executive John Tierney, accompanied by Minister for the Environment Alan Kelly, talks to journalists at Ringsend waste-water treatment plant. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

It’s the day after Halloween, but the horrors are just beginning for Government Ministers seeking to rally public support for Irish Water. Such is (...)

Ivana Bacik: the issue of adult dependent children “is particularly pressing”. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Labour Senator Ivana Bacik said greater clarity on water charges was long overdue. “The issue of adult dependent children is particularly pressing, b(...)