A matter of perspective

Sir, – I’ve been struck by the fact that two, seemingly contradictory, narratives of the election have become conventional wisdom over the past couple of days.

The first is that Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael are essentially indistinguishable from one another and that Sinn Féin’s victory represents a decisive break from the past.

The second is that Sinn Féin’s securing of 24.5 per cent of the vote gives it a superior democratic mandate to the essentially indistinguishable Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael, who polled a combined 43 per cent of the vote.

While it is undeniable that Sinn Féin have had a breakthrough this cycle, if it does lead the next government, it will be on the smallest share of the vote since the Fine Gael-led inter-party government of 1948.

Let’s keep things in perspective. – Yours, etc,