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Thread: Clann na Poblachta

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    Default Clann na Poblachta

    I'm not sure if this should be here or in History, the Moderators can move if forum choice was wrong.

    As a possible FG-SF alliance and the comparison to 1948 are already up, I think it's time to ask this question. "Is it just me" or does SF (i.e. PSF) today somewhat resemble the original Clann na Poblachta? And also, where are the families and other direct traditions that formed CnaP back then - are some of them in SF?

    From what I could gather, CnaP was a party that at the core was Republican, but accepted (at present) a constitutional settlement.

    It was an aliance of strong Socialists and more "orthodox" Republicans.

    It was headed by a former IRA Chief of Staff.

    It has not completely repudiated violence and was connected with a violent movement in the North for quite some time (Liam Kelly / Fianna Uladh).

    Seems to ring some bells. But then I realy don't know enough. Perhaps the comparison is misguided? If so I'd like to understand why.

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    Default Re: Clann na Poblachta

    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelR
    I'm not sure if this should be here or in History, the Moderators can move if forum choice was wrong.

    As a possible FG-SF alliance and the comparison to 1948 are already up, I think it's time to ask this question. "Is it just me" or does SF (i.e. PSF) today somewhat resemble the original Clann na Poblachta? And also, where are the families and other direct traditions that formed CnaP back then - are some of them in SF?

    From what I could gather, CnaP was a party that at the core was Republican, but accepted (at present) a constitutional settlement.

    It was an aliance of strong Socialists and more "orthodox" Republicans.

    It was headed by a former IRA Chief of Staff.

    It has not completely repudiated violence and was connected with a violent movement in the North for quite some time (Liam Kelly / Fianna Uladh).

    Seems to ring some bells. But then I realy don't know enough. Perhaps the comparison is misguided? If so I'd like to understand why.

    The socialist aspect to Clann was minimal. Most were IRA people looking to pay back FF for the executions and fed up of Sinn Féin claiming to be the Government! Major error was to enter coalition with FG. Had they not done so they might have become far stronger electorally.

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    Well this definitely doesn't belong in the Sinn Féin forum. CnaP was a separate entity entirely. It was definitely populist rather than socialist.

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    Noel Browne became a memeber of Labour but I wonder where the rest of their membership went?

    Count Plunkett (amongst others) stood as a joint Sinn Féin-Clann na Poblachta I think in the 1930s...? So did they return to Sinn Féin? Or Fianna Fáil?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zyklon B
    Noel Browne became a memeber of Labour but I wonder where the rest of their membership went?

    Count Plunkett (amongst others) stood as a joint Sinn Féin-Clann na Poblachta I think in the 1930s...? So did they return to Sinn Féin? Or Fianna Fáil?

    Plunkett stood for Coras na Poblachta which was a kind of percusor to the Clann although directly under control of IRA. Peadar Cowan ended up in Labour with Browne via National Progressive Democrats as did Jack McQuillan. Most of the others drifted away but voters probably mainly went back to FF.

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    Yeah, I always thought it was more of a precursor to Labour?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nem
    Yeah, I always thought it was more of a precursor to Labour?

    Labour were there before Clann and their vote was largely unaffected by Clann. Only effect was that Browne, Cowan and McQuillan ended up in Labour after other ventures including Fianna Fáil!. Labour, then as now, had minimal appeal to radical republicans.

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    Jack McQuillan.
    Reading Browne's own memoirs and indeed John Horgan's book on Browne, McQuillan keeps appearing. But I wonder was he just an extension of Browne or what. He just seemed to exist in the formers shadow!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Zyklon B
    Noel Browne became a memeber of Labour but I wonder where the rest of their membership went?

    Count Plunkett (amongst others) stood as a joint Sinn Féin-Clann na Poblachta I think in the 1930s...? So did they return to Sinn Féin? Or Fianna Fáil?
    If I recall correctly, Noel Browne was a bit of a political whore, being affiliated to numerous different parties and standing as an independent. He was also involved in trying to set up a 'national progressive democrats' and a 'socialist labour party'.
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    From a book I'm reading at the moment about the history of Labour (The Irish Labour Part 1922-74, Niamh Puirséil) it makes some points about Browne and his relationship to the party [if I recall these points correctly].

    Apparently Browne considered Labour his natural home, but chose Clann Na Poblachta because he felt that Labour was, in effect, a working class party not very open to professional-class persons in their ranks.

    It also suggests that, although not known at the time, that he privately applied to join Labour at some point after the mother & child scheme failure, but that Labour rejected him, presumably because of antipathy felt by him by senior members of the Parliamentary Labour Party. It is believe they were unimpressed with his handling of the mother & child affair (believing him to have jeopordised the substantive policy goal by doing a unilateral solo run against the church).

    Having being rejected by Labour, and having being an independent supporting the FF government from the backbanches, he first made an abortive attempt to set up a new left wing party, and then joined Fianna Fail.
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