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Social Democrats

  • 23-07-2021 11:50pm
    Registered Users Posts: 8,142 ✭✭✭blackwhite

    Stories circulating yesterday of a letter from a number of SD members and some Councillors calling for leadership elections within the party. Given the party was formed as a vehicle for 3 individuals initially - but has clearly evolved into a much broader party then it’s hard to argue that at some point they need to, at the very least, affirm that the membership and parliamentary party have given a mandate to the leader(s).

    Can’t help but think that they’d be one hell of a political force with the likes of Gannon or Cairns at the helm of the party.

    They wouldn’t necessarily be my cup of tea in terms of economic policies, but with one of those two as leader they could potentially kill off Labour once and for all, and become a serious rival to SF for left-leaning voters



  • Posts: 6,192 ✭✭✭ Gunner Rough Mayonnaise

    It would be foolish for em to walk away from leadership they have imo

    Would been the easy option last year for em to sit in government and pocket handy pensions and face wipeout at next election ala greens,PDs,labour effectively dead.....

    if they serious they should build and sap support from ffg,aiming particularly for the youth/progressive FG vote,as realistically its prime for taking and unlikely to go towards shinners/labour at this stage......(though also need be stronger on local issue)

  • Registered Users Posts: 87 ✭✭RamonD3

    They could certainly use a single leader for some direction, I'm not entirely sure what they stand for.

    Personally I don't like Gannon or Cairns. Although they are primed to target the millennial vote. I gave Cian O'Callaghan a second preference the last time, purely on the back of a leaflet he had about various inequalities of opportunity and services between different postal codes. But listening to their deputies I am mostly hearing them championing whatever the latest crusade is. And don't start me on zero covid!

  • Registered Users Posts: 4,109 ✭✭✭Augme

    Cairns and Gannon don't have enough experience to lead yet. Though I think both are very good. They still struggle as a proper functioning political party and don't seem to have enough td/councillors yet to take out labour.

  • Registered Users Posts: 18,921 ✭✭✭✭BonnieSituation

    They need to continue to grow the way they are. It's tempting to see this slow build as unattractive but it's the best way. Otherwise they risk imploding.

    I think a leadership change after the next general election would be more apt.

    They're where my votes will be going anyway.

  • Registered Users Posts: 19,495 ✭✭✭✭Muahahaha

    Yeah would agree with this, growth of political parties comes at a glacial pace. If party members think it can be sped up simply by a change of leader they should be careful what they wish for.

    Id say the SDs main problem is that Murphy & Shorthall are both are 67 years old and one or both of them might be thinking of retirement at the next election in 3 years time when they hit 70. Their votes are personal ones so it wont be easy for the SDs to hang onto those seats when they do retire.

    Holly Cairns would be the obvious new leader in time but if Murphy & Shortall did retire and their seats were not retained then she would have an even smaller party to lead. If that happens there will be talk of a merger with Labour. I couldnt see that happening so long as Kelly is the leader because theres a lot of animus towards him but further down the road it could happen if the SDs lose seats. Retaining the Murphy & Shortall seats will be vital to their long term survival as a party.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 18,921 ✭✭✭✭BonnieSituation

    They actually couldn't field a candidate in that instance. Too many elections came too quickly. They were right to rationalise. That's good leadership.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,826 ✭✭✭rolling boh

    suppose it depends who they get to stand with a profile and be prepared to play the long game maybe a really long game can get stuck between not backing FFFG or doing so and paying a huge price and back to where they started.Not a left wing supporter but with so many independents and groups that fall out with each other over nothing really we need a party that can offer a choice that would actually take the plunge and go into goverment that could cut a deal with the likely partners .

  • Registered Users Posts: 15,710 ✭✭✭✭Galwayguy35

    I'd say they have got as big as they are going to get, maybe another seat or two but they are going for the same middle class liberal voters as Labour, the Greens and in some areas SF.

    Parties like Labour, the SDs and the Greens will never be popular or rural or working class urban areas so their options are limited in how many TDs they can get elected.

  • Registered Users Posts: 11,601 ✭✭✭✭expectationlost

    Soc Dems constitution

    Following a general election in consequence of which the Party does not enter into

    Government, the term of office of the Party Leader(s) shall end three months after the date of

    formation of the new Government. Should no party member be elected to the Dáil, Seanad or European Parliament, the leadership falls open to all members eligible to vote for party leader.

    apparently no-one put themselves forward to contest them

    Post edited by expectationlost on

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  • Registered Users Posts: 468 ✭✭costacorta

    Holly won’t hold her seat in next election never mind be leader of SD . Unfortunately as I think she has ability but I think she will be a one term TD and could disappear from politics.

  • Registered Users Posts: 11,601 ✭✭✭✭expectationlost

    really find it bizarre people saying they voted for people who's politics they clearly don't agree with

  • Registered Users Posts: 818 ✭✭✭Burt Renaults

    A lack of experience didn't stop Dick Spring from becoming Labour leader in his early thirties, within a year of being elected to the Dáil.

  • Registered Users Posts: 87 ✭✭RamonD3

    Ah stop, I gave Aodhan O'Riordan the number one, had to hold my nose 🙂

  • Registered Users Posts: 15,710 ✭✭✭✭Galwayguy35

  • Registered Users Posts: 186 ✭✭jd1983

    Sure, it's definitely a very important issue for some but I'd question the rationale of focusing a lot of energy on this. If you're struggling to pay extortionate rent or homeless, you're probably not going to worry much about how some toff in kildare is treating race horses.

    If you've got cancer or a family member has cancer and are on a waiting list that's unusual in the western world, then greyhound welfare is probably a low priority.

    Placing a lot of importance on such things often shows activists being out of touch with real struggles.

  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 64,893 Mod ✭✭✭✭L1011

    You can consider more than one thing at a time to be important you know. Parties that focus on only one thing don't generally get anywhere.

    The SDs are polling 1% in some polls currently; Gannon, Cairns and O'Callaghan will all lose their seats if there are better vote management structures in place by SF and FF/FG (for Cairns). This heave is more likely to tear them apart than improve their chances.

    Neither Murphy or Shortall has an obvious replacement with a good chance of holding their seat should they wish to retire.

    I only know Kildare North well of their constituencies. There, Murphy has three Councillors, but whichever one is more popular with her seems to vary month on month so none of them are actually getting time to build a profile consistently due to that. There's no councillor in two of the substantial MDs either (Celbridge and Maynooth) so there's only Murphy as a name there. It would be exceptionally hard to retain the seat without her.

    Constituency has a history of older TDs and candidates, so there'd be nothing to stop her retaining a seat at 70.

  • Registered Users Posts: 29,356 ✭✭✭✭freshpopcorn

    I don't think Cairns is overly liked in the area she ran in from what I know. I think some gave her a chance or a second presence after voting for her fella at the time and she hasn't impressed.

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,565 ✭✭✭RandomName2

    The SDs are polling 1% in some polls currently; Gannon, Cairns and O'Callaghan will all lose their seats if there are better vote management structures in place by SF and FF/FG (for Cairns). This heave is more likely to tear them apart than improve their chances.

    I am surprised by how little traction the SD have. Is it that they overlap too much with too many preexisting parties? They have done little to blot their copy book (other than the initial falling out between Stephen Donnelly and the other leaders), but they seem to barely be registering in polls at all.

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  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 64,893 Mod ✭✭✭✭L1011

    There is virtually nothing to differentiate them from Labour in terms of policies, and with Labour having more Oireachtas members and 3x the number of councillors they continue to get more media time.

    A basis of "We're not Labour, we weren't in Government in 2011-2016" becomes less useful the longer ago 2016 becomes. They would have to become the bigger party and that is unlikely to happen now.

  • Registered Users Posts: 26,020 ✭✭✭✭blanch152

    They don't have the shock-jock populist profile of Sinn Fein so that limits their appeal to some demographics.

    At the other end, there is nothing really inspiring about Murphy or Shortall, quite boring in fact.

  • Registered Users Posts: 481 ✭✭mariab21

    Do you try bring Sinn Fein, the islands most popular party into every thread?

  • Registered Users Posts: 26,020 ✭✭✭✭blanch152

    Nope, but it is relevant to contrast why the Social Democrats haven't been successful. In the modern context, shouting loudest seems to have an appeal, and the Social Democrats haven't been good at that.

  • Registered Users Posts: 933 ✭✭✭jamule

    I think **** the bed Shorthall is a big problem for them, seen as defacto leader with zero ambition but whinge.

    and as blanchs says, they don't whing loud enough.

  • Posts: 6,192 ✭✭✭ Gunner Rough Mayonnaise

    All politics is local,(forgetting this has cost ff big time)...cairns and co,who hane done well,and have reasonable local profiles to get reelcted,likely lacking the numbers to bring in a 2nd for now

    They are recruiting heavily enough,particularly in youth age groups....with end of covid,their peofile should rise as increased possibility for activism.....the purple is a nice touch as gives a reasonable 'brand' identity for quick give em a preference

  • Registered Users Posts: 8,239 ✭✭✭Pussyhands

    Social Democrats once again showing they are sexist.

    Thanking all women on "nollaig na mban" or whatever it's called. I'm surprised and not surprised at the same time that they've done this.

    On on hand, they're pro women rather than pro equality so you might expect it. On the other hand, nollaig na mban is where women are given a rest after all the work they did during the Christmas, i.e in the kitchen cooking and cleaning...surely the Soc Dems can't support this?

    Someone needs to tell the Soc Dems that if they want to tackle what they perceive as inequality towards women, the solution is equality, not giving preferential treatment to women.

  • Registered Users Posts: 7,462 ✭✭✭growleaves

    They are the ultimate overlap party and there are already at least three other parties to represent their point of view, really five. I never understood why they even came into existence since most Irish politicians across five parties are bog-standard social democrats, so why the need for a capital-S capital-D Social Democrat party?

    I am not the type to faint

    When things are odd or things are quaint

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  • Registered Users Posts: 13,505 ✭✭✭✭Mad_maxx

    Wouldn't vote for them if you paid me but they should grow steadily, they have a lot of friends in Media, share the same politics as most of the media and especially the NGO sector. That makes them need no PR ,they are criticism proof .

    They are the go to party for uber WOKE activists and just regular young middle class progressives, whether they ever wish to join government remains to be seen, unlikely until Roisin Shorthall steps back a bit as she's never been anything but a waffling hurler on the ditch.