Dissident TDs call for Oireachtas to reform Seanad
Fine Gael TDs and senators have tabled a motion calling on the Oireachtas to reform the Seanad
Dissident Fine Gael TDs and senators including former Junior Minister Lucinda Creighton have tabled a motion calling on the Oireachtas to reform the Seanad if next week’s referendum is defeated
Dissident Fine Gael TDs and senators including former Junior Minister Lucinda Creighton have tabled a motion calling on the Oireachtas to reform the Seanad if next week’s referendum is defeated.
The manoeuvres by the former Fine Gael parliamentary party members who call themselves the Reform Alliance marks a further act of defiance against Taoiseach Enda Kenny and his administration.
The Government has been insisting that the public must focus on a straightforward Yes or No to abolishing and has refused to discuss other options such as reform proposals for the upper house if the people vote to retain it on October 4th.
Meanwhile Taoiseach Enda Kenny last night defended his decision to not to take part in a televised debate with political opponents of the referendum to abolish the Seanad and rejected recent allegations that his leadership style is dictatorial.
Mr Kenny was speaking at a public meeting on the upcoming referenda at the Fitzpatrick Castle Hotel in Killiney, Co Dublin. The Taoiseach was greeted by a modest anti-austerity protest of about a dozen people at the gates of the hotel.
There appeared to be a strong Fine Gael representation in the audience as Mr Kenny regularly received warm applause and was afforded a partial standing ovation as he entered the chamber.
“I have been compared to Mussolini and Libertas,” he said. “Let me assure you of this: I respect the primacy of the people and their vote. I reject completely allegations of power-grabs and of being a dictator. People in a democracy are entitled to their view.”
He said it was not necessary for him to take part in a televised debate on the matter.
“There is nothing sinister about this. What could be more democratic than asking the people? Government does not foist [the arguments] – an independent referendum commission explains them. That is why it is not necessary to debate the issue.”
“I debate in the people’s forum every day – the Dáil.”