In my view quite a lot.
It provides a second look at legislation - I think over 900 amendments are made there annually.
The order of business provides a useful forum for raising issues which would otherwise not get a mention. Under parliamentary privilege.
It gives an opportunitity for young politicians to cut their teeth in a national forum, while giving wise old heads a place to give a piece of their mind,without having to bother with parish pump matters.
The quality of the debate is often much higher than the Dail.
So why is the senate so crap?
1. The electoral system has become a farce with Councillors expected to copy from a list.
2. Many have no real connection to the vested interest/panel from which they came.
3. Only ff tds can choose their leader.
4. Donie Cassidy.
So how can it be improved or is it beyond repair?