The Gilmore gale is in full force and the latest polling data suggests that Labour could become the largest party in Dáil Eireann after the next election and Eamon will become Taoiseach. Polling data to be published in the next week suggest that the majority of people believe that Eamon is Jesus Christ (although more popular). In fact, Eamon could soon become as popular as, well, Bertie Ahern was.
The Labour backroom boys (and quota of backroom girls) have played a blinder. A 21 year veteran of Dáil Eireann has been transformed overnight into a "new" force in Irish politics. Just why it took this new force 21 years to get any notice has yet to be explained. Last week Nessa Childers claimed that her party (the oldest in the state) is the "new party" in Irish politics. The spin would make an Iron Curtain era communist dictator blush with embarrassment.
I'm convinced that Labour are only one strategy meeting away from blacking up Eamon and wheeling him out as Ireland's Obama. However, Senator Obama's rallying call of "Yes we can" would have to be adapted to the standards of the Irish Labour Party. "Yes we can, unless we can't, we might but then again we might not" would be the most honest adaptation. How would it look on a placard though?
Many have pointed out that Gilmore best vocalises the "mood" of the Nation. A dozen callers to Liveline each day are pretty articulate at expressing the mood of the Nation but I'd want to know a bit more about Mick from Mulhuddart before I'd elect him to high office. What is his opinion on the Croke Park agreement for example?
So, just what is it about lads like Eamon, Bertie, Brian Cowen and Gerry Adams* that appeals to the Irish electorate?
*Those four were, at various points, the most popular leaders in Ireland according to opinion polls.