The largest parties

Sir, – Pat Leahy (Opinion & Analysis, November 3rd) refers to Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil's "endurance as the largest parties". It shouldn't be forgotten that in the 2011 general election,Fianna Fáil almost got wiped out; it was returned with just 20 seats – 17 behind Labour and 56 behind Fine Gael. Indeed, many commentators were wondering if Fianna Fáil would survive such a political mauling. Well, survive it did; but the days of one-party government in Ireland are well and truly over. Of course, it looks very much like Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil (two sides of the same coin) will remain the two largest parties here for the foreseeable future; but in what order is anybody's guess.

Also, it can surely be only a matter of time before the Tweedle Dum and Tweedle Dee of bourgeois politics in this country bury the Civil War hatchet and go into coalition with each other. Then and only then can there be a united, cohesive, and effective left-wing opposition in the Dáil. We live in hope. – Yours, etc,


Dalkey, Co Dublin.