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Thread: Should Ireland introduce fixed term parliaments of four years duration?

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    Politics.ie Member RobertW's Avatar
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    Default Should Ireland introduce fixed term parliaments of four years duration?

    Should Ireland have a fixed term parliament with elections held every four years (instead of every five)?

    Such an act was recently introduced in the UK under the fixed term parliaments act 2011.

    Fixed-term Parliaments Act 2011 - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    Introducing a fixed term parliament would remove the right of the Taoiseach to call an election at a time of his choosing. This, I believe, should not be the prerogative of any member of any TD.

    Secondly I believe a four year term is just about right from which a new government must be formed and/or seek a new mandate. Five year parliaments should be a thing of the past as such long terms were introduced at a time of when the world moved at a much slower pace. Longer 5 year parliaments also only suit politicians in power with large majorities.

    Obviously there would have to be some sort of in-built mechanism to dissolve the Dáil (with an early general election) in the event of a no confidence in the government motion passing.

    I would also add in the fact that no new government can be formed without a general election. . . In other words Labour wouldn't be able to do what they did in 1994 and switch sides from FF to FG without an election.

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    Quote Originally Posted by RobertW View Post
    Introducing a fixed term parliament would remove the right of the Taoiseach to call an election at a time of his choosing. This, I believe, should not be the prerogative of any member of any TD.
    Quote Originally Posted by RobertW View Post
    Obviously there would have to be some sort of in-built mechanism to dissolve the Dáil (with an early general election) in the event of a no confidence in the government motion passing.

    I would also add in the fact that no new government can be formed without a general election. . . In other words Labour wouldn't be able to do what they did in 1994 and switch sides from FF to FG without an election.
    As far as I can see, these are simply contradictory imperatives. (What's to stop a government voting no confidence in itself?)

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    Politics.ie Member ruserious's Avatar
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    No, imagine of the last Dáil was only in year one when the Cowen government came to what it was.
    QED.
    Boycott the "Irish" Sun rag.

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    Politics.ie Member RobertW's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by stringjack View Post
    As far as I can see, these are simply contradictory imperatives. (What's to stop a government voting no confidence in itself?)
    Ok fair point. . . I'd concede on that.

    Perhaps allowing a maximum of two governments in a specific Dáil term. It's an unusual occurrence I suppose.

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    Politics.ie Member RobertW's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ruserious View Post
    No, imagine of the last Dáil was only in year one when the Cowen government came to what it was.
    QED.
    Cowens government fell as he couldn't command a majority in the Dáil . . . Such a scenario would still exist.

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    Politics.ie Member ruserious's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RobertW View Post
    Cowens government fell as he couldn't command a majority in the Dáil . . . Such a scenario would still exist.
    Yes and if there was a fixed term parliament, we would be made to suffer him trying to form a government which would have to last the full 4 years.
    Boycott the "Irish" Sun rag.

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    Politics.ie Member RobertW's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ruserious View Post
    Yes and if there was a fixed term parliament, we would be made to suffer him trying to form a government which would have to last the full 4 years.
    No. . If you read the opening post I stated that where a government has lost a motion of no confidence an early election should be called.

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    Politics.ie Member seabhcan's Avatar
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    What would happen with a fixed term system if a coalition government fell apart? Just have no government until the next election?

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    Politics.ie Member seabhcan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RobertW View Post
    No. . If you read the opening post I stated that where a government has lost a motion of no confidence an early election should be called.
    Thats the current system.

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    Politics.ie Member ruserious's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RobertW View Post
    No. . If you read the opening post I stated that where a government has lost a motion of no confidence an early election should be called.
    Because that is so different from now?
    Boycott the "Irish" Sun rag.

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