Tomorrow Brian Cowen will be elected Taoiseach of Ireland. The Big question will be the result of the reshuffle? Will Harney be replaced by Cannon? Who will get Finance? Who will be dropped and who will be promoted.
I have a feeling Lenihan will get Finance and Tániste. If that happens I think Coughlan could move to Justice. The poison chalice is the big Question though, if Hareny leaves Health who will take over? Cannon won’t want it, if he has any sense. It will be interesting to have an Governemnt Minister in the Seanad though! It will increase its poistion within the political system.
Another question is will he drop any policies? will he try and renegiate the Programme for Government? I doubt on both of these. No Irish Government policy has major opposition in public opinion like 42 days and ID’s in the UK. Of course the first month will be taken up with Lisbon, but that could be the waste of the Honeymoon period also.
What I want to know is will we see Civil Partnerships (Unions or whatever) under Cowen? Ahern was great on rhetoric but will Cowen take the action?
He was born 10 January 1960 and was first elected in 1984 to represent constituency of Laois-Offaly. He has served in the following Ministries: Minister for Labour (1992–1993), Minister for Energy (1993), Minister for Transport, Energy & Communications (1993–1994), Minister for Health & Children (1997–2000), Minister for Foreign Affairs (2000–2004) and until tomorrow Minister of Finance.
He has wide ranging expeirence in a number of portfolios so has the potential to be a good Taoiseach.
The question is will he face the same problems has Gordon Brown? He is taking over from a popular Taoiseach, granted he has been dogged lately by the Tribunal, but he is popular in Ireland none the less.
He was not leader of the Party when elected. This isnt as big an issue as in the UK considering when we go to the polls you can vote for every party, as is the way with PRSTV. While in the UK you vote for one and thats the leader you expect. I dont see accusations of being ‘unelected’ being bandied about as much as they are with Brown.
Time will tell if he ‘dithers’ like Gordon. I dount he will though.
Of course he will always be BIFFO* to me dispite the fact he is Taoiseach!
*Note: I take BIFFO to mean “Big Ignorant F***er From Offaly” not “Big Intelligent Fellow From Offaly”