Ronny has a good post on his blog why the next the European Parliament Elections will be different from past ones. This election will quiet important with both the Party of European Socialists (PES) and the European People’s Party (EPP) putting forward agreed candidates for the post of President of the European Commission.
There is also the possibility of the Pirate Party becoming a European political force as they will be running in most of the countries of the European Union. A conference on a European Pirate Party is taking place this weekend in Prague.
But this is not the case in Ireland. With the elections taking place on the same day as the Local Elections in 2014 much of the focus in Ireland will be on national parties and how they are doing with very little to do about how their European Parties are doing.
Another reason for this is that will be the current MEP’s running again. While we have already seen 3 changes in our MEP’s since 2009. Paul Murphy replaced Joe Higgins in Dublin and Phil Prendergast replaced Alan Kelly in April 2011 following the General Election. In February this year Emer Costello replaced Proinsias De Rossa as he retired from the Parliament. It is unlikely there will be a change in who is running.
While Dublin could see a seat up for grabs if Paul Murphy can’t get the votes that Joe Higgins got in 2009. But I doubt there will be major changes in any of the other Euro Constituencies.
Another reason why the European Elections won’t be as exciting in Ireland is that we have no Pirate Party. The Pirate Party Ireland/Páirtí Foghlaithe na hÉireann was founded in May 2009 and had over 300 members in 2010 meaning they could register as a party, but in 2011 the party winded down after not standing in any election.
There is a hope that an Irish Pirate Party may be started up again and therefore make the European Parliament Elections here more interesting, but they have 2 years to do it.
Well I haven’t blogged since Monday and I apologise! But I may make up for it today! So I have found a few things relating to the EU elections.
First up is VoteMatch. Now I think its done by the same crowd who had the tool for the London Elections last year. This is based on the European Political Parties rather then the National Parties. You get asked to agree, disagree, neither with 30 statements and its gives you your match. My results are
A good idea I think considering it will show which European Party you agree with. Check it out.
The other thing I found is called CandidateWatch. This is lauching on May 5th. What does it do?
Candidatewatch Ireland will allow you to question all Irish candidates in the forthcoming European Elections. Since all questions and answers are made public, you can follow up on promises after the elections.
It has been set up b ay German non-profit organisation called parlamentwatch.de and TASC, an. Irish think-tank. It is an interesting idea and could frame the online dialogue between candidates and voters. It will be forum based, so should be easy to use. I look forwward to the launch of this one.
So yea, I was hoping that a certain Think post of mine would get activists of the PES (Socialists) riled up and start arguing, but it didn’t. So my plan did not work. In fact I had a PES blogger agreeing with me!
What it did point out is that PES activists seem to be the same as most voters in the European Election and ignore most of the campiagning done at the European level. Who really cares if the PES and ELDR (Liberals) exchanged open letters not exactly vote getting stuff now is it!
So how do I annoy PES activists? Please someone tell me!
I put a post up on think about it website about the European Elections in Northern Ireland. To me, Northern Ireland is going to be one of the interesting constituencies in Ireland and UK where recent events and changes to parties and the split to the Unionist vote. Its all going to ve very interesting!
Something that seems to have escaped mention on this blog is the change that could come about in Northern Ireland during the European Elections this year. Northern Ireland is the only part of the United Kingdom that does not use the D’Hondt method of PR. Instead it uses the Single Transferable Vote (STV) electoral system.
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.