The Left are down

According to the latest Opinion Poll, due to be published tomorrow in the Sunday Business Post, Labour and Sinn Fein are both down points. According to Irish Election, the figures are:

FG 31 (+1); FF 28 (+5); Lab 17 (-5); SF 7 (-4); Green 7 (+1); Others 10 (+2)

So thats is the left down a total of 9 percentage points. The main benificaries of this is Fianna Fail, but with Fine Gael and the Greens both picking up slightly. Interesting to see a Fianna Fail bounce before the budget, but is this a feel good bounce from their Ard Fheis recently? I suppose we will have to see if they can maintain their support after the budget.

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I Got Mentioned In the Seanad Official Report

Its not very often you see your name written in the Seanad Official Reprot and there is its as right as rain, my name in the middle of a speech by Jerry Buttimer.

It is time we got rid of the e-voting machines. We must draw a line in the sand, throw them into the sea off Roches Point and let them be gone. We have not examined the role of technology and it is not referred to in the Bill. There are some great websites such as www.politics.ie in which people engage by bloging. I have begun bloging and a person in my party, namely, Mr. Stephen Spillane, is teaching me. It is a great way of communicating with people. Twitter, Facebook and Bebo are not mentioned in the Bill. They are a means of advertising, but will the cost of using them be measured?

Im in shock, though I got a text to say he mentioned me, I was not expecting it certainly not in a debate about Electoral Spending! Not sure how I am going to top this one!

Read the full speech here

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So much for Independent State Broadcaster

So tonight RTÉ apologised for the airing of the report about the Nude Pictures of Brian Cowen last night. The Government seam to be trying to censor RTÉ at all times and this is the second one I know of. The first is Ministers been given a g0-over in interviews. Suzy has of course the full catalogue of pressure RTÉ are under from the Government.

Slugger have a PR from Dublin North Fianna Fail TD Michael Kennedy which gives an insight to how FF see this:

“Regardless of who the incumbent is, the position of An Taoiseach deserves respect, especially from our national public service broadcaster.”
“For an item like this to be given so much air time beggars belief and raises serious questions about the agenda at play in the RTE newsroom. It was obviously seen as a piece of entertainment – biased and partisan entertainment. It was the most tasteless item (I will not refer to it as ‘news’ as it clearly wasn’t) I have seen for many years.”
“It is evident that RTE management have long since given way to the celebrity culture where reporters and presenters have been allowed become commentators in constant pursuit of their own ‘celebrity cult’, rather than simply reporting the news in a straight forward manner, without their personal point of view.”
“The incoming RTE Authority should have a hard look at the direction the broadcaster is heading.  Maybe a change at the top and a back to basics approach in terms of RTE’s public service remit would be a start,” concluded Deputy Kennedy.

And of course here is the apology (via @handelaar)

Follow the debacle on twitter with the tag #picturegate

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Fine Gael Ard Fheis – Sorted!

Fine Gael
Image via Wikipedia
(I’m told a new logo will be launched at Ard Fheis)

So I got a call and an email from the lovely people in the Fine Gael Press Office today to tell me that I have media accreditation for the Fine Gael Ard Fheis. Its just hitting me now what I have left myself in for as I normally get caught to do things at Ard Fheis (its the fault of being in YFG). At the lastArd Fheis I remember manning the YFG stand during part of the day, and thats not including helping carryoing boxes and stuff for other things! We normally get thanked and stuff but with the whole media accredation now I have a lot to do, there goes my relaxing weekend of drinking! 😛

I am looking forward to the Ard Fheis anyway and will be a major experience, I just hope I can still vote and stuff! I will be a fun weekend! I can’t wait!

Don’t forget to keep track of all the action on twitter by watching the keyword #fgaf and I’m sure a liveblog and that will be set up closer to the day.

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Cowen Nude

Yes, I know this is probably everywhere, but meh! Suzy was giving out earlier that RTÉ have taken this off their website, but Damien Mulley has it up on Youtube.

Enjoy!

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Ireland South – The Candidates

As most of you know, Cork is part of the Ireland South constituency for the European Elections. This compromises of Cork, Kerry, Limerick, Tipperary and Waterford. In the last elections in 2004 Ireland South returned 3 MEPs. In 2009 it will also return 3 MEPs.

In 2004 the following were elected:
Brian Crowley (Fianna Fail/UEN)
Simon Coveney (Fine Gael/EPP-ED)
Kathy Sinnot (Independent/IndDem)

This year sees a few changes as Colm Burke replaced Simon Coveney as MEP following Simon’s re-election to the Dáil. Also following this years elections Fianna Fail will change party groupings from UEN to ALDE.

So who are the 09 Candidates?

Well the following are the list of official candidates I can find for the Ireland South Constituency (mainly found via Eurvote.org)

Brian Crowley MEP – Fianna Fail
Brian Crowley was first elected to the European Parliament in 1994. He is currently Co-President of the UEN. He served in Seanad Eireann prior to being elected as an MEP.

Colm Burke MEP – Fine Gael
Colm Burke is a former Lord Mayor of Cork and represented the North West Ward of the City on Cork City Council. He was co-opted onto Simon Coveney’s seat in 2007.

Dan Boyle – Green Party/An Chomortas Glas
Senator Dan Boyle is the current Chairman of the Green Party as well as being Deputy Leader of Senad Eireann. He served as TD for Cork South Central between 2002 and 2007. He is the Green Party Spokesman on Finance and on Social and Family Affairs. This is his first attempt at a European Election

Kathy Sinnott MEP– Independent
Kathy Sinnott was elected to the European Parliament in 2004. She is currently Co-Chair of the Independence and Democracy Group within the Parliament. Prior winning her seat in the Parliament, she ran in the 2002 General Election in Cork South Central and narrowly missed out on a seat.

Alan Kelly – Labour Party
Senator Alan Kelly was elected toe Seanad Eireann in 2007 on the Agricultural Panel. He is from Nenagh in County Tipperary. He is Labour’s spokesperson in the Seanad on Tourism, Finance and Local Government. This is first contesting a European Election.

Sean Kelly – Fine Gael
Sean Kelly was President of the GAA from 2003 to 2006. He previously ran for Fine Gael in the Local Elections in North Kerry and failed to be elected. This is his first attempt at a European Election.

Toireasa Ferris – Sinn Fein
Toireasa Ferris was co-opted to Kerry County Council in 2003 (to replace Martin Ferris TD), she won relection in 2004. She was Cathaoirleach of Kerry County Council from 2005-2006. This is her first attempt at a European Election.

So that is all the declared candidates for Ireland South. If you know of more let me know! I will be doing a more in-depth look at the candidates and where to find them online over the next few weeks!

This was originally posted on “The Political Gay” on GayCork.com

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Fine Gael Ard Fheis 2009

I got my invite to Ard Fheis in the post today, sadly no Media Accreditation. (Might give a ring tomorrow.) The time table of the Ard Fheis is as follows

Friday April 3rd

7:00pm Opening Ceremony

7:30pm Leaders Address

8:00pm Sessions: European and Foreign Affairs, Defence

Saturday 4th April

9:30am – 1:00pm (Televised 11:00am – 1:00pm) Sessions: Health and Employment. Keynote speech on Economy by Deputy Leader Richard Bruton TD

2:00pm-6:00pm Sessions: Justice, Education, Regional Development and Agriculture

7:00pm Leaders Address (Televised from 8:30pm -9:00pm)

Entertainment from 11pm

I’m looking forward to Ard Fheis and am heading up with the UCC Gang, should be an experience. This will be my second and below I have included a vlog experiment I did after the last Ard Fheis I was at back in 2007 with a few thoughts and things.

Say hello if you see me at Ard Fheis, Ill be the one tweeting from my phone!

Open Meetings on The Economy

Simon Coveney TD (FG – Cork South Central) is organising open meetings on the Economy. He currently has three organised. They will take place on Thursday, Friday and Saturday of this week.

Thursday 26th March. Carrigaline Court. 8pm
Friday 27th March. The Bosun, Monkstown. 8pm
Saturday 28th March. Ballinlough Community Hall. 7pm

He explains why he is holding these meetings

I’m holding a series of public meetings in various locations to talk to people who want to gain a better understanding of our current Economic Crisis. People are understandably fearful for what the future holds: for their jobs, their mortgages, their pensions and their ability to simply pay the bills.

This recession is very real and Cork is being hit hard. Nationally, we are facing a challenge no-one could have dreamt possible even a year ago – massive job losses, broken banks, huge personal debt, pension deficits, national exchequer collapse, an international reputation in tatters – How has it come to this and how can we dig ourselves out?

I am inviting you to come and hear the blunt facts about the state of the economy, and what can be expected in the Emergency Budget on April 7th.

My commitment is simple: straight talking, an honest assessment, answers to as many of your questions as possible – no spin, no blame, no party politics, just the facts as I see them and an outline of the choices we now face to bring hope and confidence back again.

I hope you will take the time to come along to one of the meetings as I think you’ll find the meeting interesting, informative and absolutely non party political.

Not sure if I can make any of the meetings, but Simon is a fantastic speaker on the Economy and has facts that will make you think and realise how bad a state we are in. If you can make it do go along.

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The Political Gay is back!

So today I started back blogging GayCork.com. I decided to revive the blog as with the elections and referendum this year (and a supplementry budget on April 7th) there is stuff out there to be blogged about and this way I can expand my readership! 😉

It will mainly be posts about the Local and European Elections, but after that I will switch to the re-run of the Lisbon Treaty. It is hoped that it will be a weekly post, but that might change closer to election day.

So check out the blog, or subscribe to the RSS Feed!

PS: If you are subscribed to @Stevemyopinion you will receive updates via that aswell!

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RTÉ exclude FG from Late Late Show on False Premise of Gender Balance

Old Logo
Image via Wikipedia

I received a PR about the Late Late Show from Fine Gael this evening and read it with some surprise. The Fine Gael leader in the Seanad had been asked to appear in a three person panel debate about Seanad Eireann on tonight’s show. Unfortunately the Party’s Leader of the Seanad, Frances Fitzgerald, could not appear on the show as she was unavailable.

The Party then nominated Senator Paschal Donohoe to be its representative on the panel, but he was rejected “grounds of gender balance”. RTÉ were determined not to allow Senator Paschal Donohoe to appear on the show and his place was allocated to Senator Alex White of the Labour Party, a MALE Senator. So that was obviously a false premise.

Fine Gael were offered a place on a four-person panel, but again the party representative was rejected. So I won’t be watching the Late Late Show tonight

Fine Gael Press Release

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