46 thoughts on “Ask A Broadsheet Reader

      1. Jonotti

        That doesn’t change the fact that the Senate is composed of undemocratically elected representatives.

      2. Jess

        I voted no at the urging, nay begging of my friends who were arguing for reform. I gave them the benefit of the doubt and said I would be looking out for their campaigning on the issue they were so passionate about.

        Havent heard a single person peep about reform since.

        Blow it up

  1. Unreconstructed

    It’s only a proposal for Seanad reform, to be placed beside all the other proposals for Seanad reform dating back decades now. Don’t worry, it won’t be implemented. This is Ireland.

  2. Joan Burton

    Do we get a vote in nordie elections ?

    Why should they get to poke their oars in here if we dont get to do it up there.

  3. Sinabhfuil

    People who live in a jurisdiction should vote for those who decide the laws of that jurisdiction.

  4. Joe835

    I’d normally say “no representation without taxation”. But………

    Who does the Seanad represent only a small bunch of graduates and elites? So why not have a few other voices in there? A few Senators from the unionist tradition (they wouldn’t be the first in Seanad Éireann) would give our Oireachtas a bit more pluralism than it has now.

    1. shitferbrains

      The ” Unionist tradition ” of the 1920’s and the DUP mob are two entirely different animals. They’ve gone from ” no mean people ” to extremely mean people “.

    2. micosoft

      That won’t happen though as Unionists won’t vote. The old system only worked because unionists were appointed the Seanad. All we will get is a couple of Sinners in the Seanad except they will all have annoying nordie accents.

      All the so called recommendations make the Seanad still less useful then a chocolate teacup. Why can’t we have another referendum (like the Euro Treaty elections given it was last minute scaremongering that saved the Seanad) to abolish it and give everyone back their 30c a week in tax.

  5. Dubloony

    Technically I have a vote for the Seanad but never bothered to use it as it wasn’t available to all.
    And then along came the good senator Mullen. Bet you ass I’m a registered voter now!

    Am in 2 minds about the norn iron idea. Under GFA, people there can claim citizenship here and have passport etc. So if they are passport holders, as citizens, should be able to vote. But then so should any passport holder abroad be able to.

      1. Formerly known as @ireland.com

        The ”Mexican'” label is a bit lame. Why would people presume they are the Americans? Why not Canadians and call us Yanks?

      2. Kolmo

        Only the Jaffas call the Free Staters – ‘Mexicans’, they call their non-Jaffa neighbours – ‘Fenian Bostords’ and advise them on a regular basis to go to said ‘Mexico’ except the whole island is Mexico, they just don’t understand that they are also Mexicans with an aspiration to be Texans – they will always be Mexicans in the eyes of Texans…

  6. Formerly known as @ireland.com

    It would be good to reform the Seanad, so that all Irish people (from all 32 counties) get a vote. I can’t see it happening.

    Votes for migrants would be good, too.

    As the Seanad has no power, there is no impact to the Government of the country.

    1. Kieran NYC

      It hasn’t had much power up til now because it has always been controlled by government parties by default.

      Fill it with independents and you’ll see how much of a thorn it will become to the government (which would be no bad thing). It would probably be somewhere between the House of Lords in the UK and the US Senate.

    1. Ultach

      Including citizens residing outwith the state? Does any other state give the vote to nondomiciles?

      1. ahjayzis

        America, France and Poland off the top of my head. Absolutely certain there’s many more.

        1. Ultach

          Just for clarification because I don’t know, can American citizens who have never set foot in the US vote in a nationwide election? Cos that’s what’s being proposed here.

          1. Kieran NYC

            I believe all US citizens worldwide are supposed to have a Social Security Number and file a tax return each year (including actually paying some tax).

            So yes, there’s taxation, so there’s representation.

            As they’re wont to say.

          2. Ultach

            I believe you’re right. Boris Johnson was born in New York and even though he doesn’t live there the US tax authorities demanded capital gains tax from him. It would be fair enough to expect some sort of taxation from citizens living abroad and in the North in return for voting rights.

  7. Ultach

    To be fair, as I understand it the proposal is to grant votes for Irish citizens not resident in the state. If Unionists want a vote they would have to get an Irish passport (to which they are entitled if they or a parent/grandparent were born on the island). Does anyone here know if other states have a similar arrangement? As for the reporting and presentation of the proposal on the BBC website, it is shoddy and seems to be designed to whip up frothy wild-eyed contributors to BBCNI’s two main radio phone-in shows (the Stephen Nolan Show and Talkback). It’s also worked a treat at provoking a few apparently extremist partitionistas on this site into expressing some extraordinarily distasteful, self-entitled nordie-hatred (yes, Liam, I think ‘nordie’ can be derogatory), but that’s a wasp nest that doesn’t bear much poking. Also, comments on the merits and otherwise (mostly otherwise) of the Seanad Éireann have been enlightening and interesting, for which thanks.

    1. Clampers Outside!

      Hmmmm…. you got me thinking…. maybe, our government(s) has never allowed voting from abroad precisely because so many who reside permanently in the North may be given a vote.
      But, I believe that people should be allowed have a vote for up to 10 years / 2 elections cycles after they have left, which would get around the ‘full time resident / born in northern Ireland with an Irish passport’ concern…

      Just think allowed….

      1. ahjayzis

        The Irish government (past and present) hasn’t allowed emigrants a vote because they’re the ones who sent them packing. T’would be turkeys voting for Christmas, emigration is great because it culls the electorate of those made most desperate by your policies.

        1. Kieran NYC

          I would imagine it’s because the potential pool of people abroad (including the North) eligible to vote (i.e. those who could claim an Irish passport) would be greater than those living in the State itself.

          Which would be ridiculous.

          1. Ultach

            Here follows some historicogeopolitical pedantry (I’ve just writ it so it exists) based entirely on my own prejudices and obsessions. It may well appear patronising. Here goes:
            …people abroad *and* in the North (not *including*). The North is Northern Ireland, so part of Ireland, therefore not abroad, although it is integrally administered by and therefore also part of the UK.
            Some may agree with that. Some may not.

          2. Kieran NYC

            Apologies – I should have said ‘outside the State’.

            I.e. people who would be voting but not subject to the consequences of their votes. Friends of mine here in the US have gotten Irish passports from having Irish grandmothers, etc. So the potential numbers could easily be larger than the number of voters within the boundaries of the State. That’s why I would imagine this hasn’t been seriously floated before. Just a huge unknown (so try it out on the Seanad).

          3. Ultach

            And there was me thinking you were trying to be provocative with North=Abroad. Thanks for the clarification :-)
            Grant votes to passport holders outside the state for a token upper chamber in return for real tax. Northern nationalists, emigrants and Irish Americans get to participate in the Irish state and the Irish state rakes in some money. Win win! (Cynical?)

  8. Joe the Lion

    Ultach you’re part of Britain

    Believe me you’re overall better off there

    But I am not sure whether the gravy train for NI will run

    You can be part of our gang if yous give us Kyle Lafferty

    1. Ultach

      Ah Joseph, Joseph, Joseph. A lion ye may be, and I have to admit that taking down a zebra is impressive, never mind typing your comments here with paws them size, but in the cognition department you’re no match to us homo sapiens. Trying to explain to you the difference between Britain and the UK would, I fear, be like Ted trying to explain to Dougal the difference in size between Frisian cows out in the field (far away) and plastic toy Frisian cows in his hand (small). https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GFTgkibl7DU

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