Maman Poulet | Clucking away crookedly through media, politics and life

Fine Gael and Late Late Show – handbags – actually no handbags!

March 21st, 2009 · 5 Comments · Elections, Irish Politics, MSM

Flicking through some press releases in my reader tonight I noted one from Fine Gael regarding their decision not to participate in the Late Late Show debate on the Seanad earlier this evening. I was wondering about all that testosterone on the top panel.

Reading the statement I was none the wiser that RTE had asked Fidelma Healy-Eames to take part. Deaglan de Breádún tells us all about this bit in tomorrow Irish Times. RTE had asked for the Fine Gael leader in the Seanad, Frances Fitzgerald, but she was unavailable. (That would be twice on the television in one week following her appearance on Questions and Answers – lovely Hilary Clintonesque hairdo!) The Late Late Show team wanted a gender balance.

Fine Gael wanted their man in Dublin Central, blogging twittering Senator Paschal Donohoe to take part. Paschal is running in the Dáil by election in Dublin Central in June. (Possibly why we are seeing a lot of blogging and twittering!) The Late Late Show said again they wanted a woman on the panel.

Fine Gael said their rep was to be Paschal or no-one and withdrew all their participants. The Late Late Show could not find a woman Senator for the panel at all seemingly and chose Labour Party Senator Alex White – also of the blogosphere. To rub salt further into Fine Gael’s wound, Alex is going to run for the Labour Party in a forthcoming by election in Dublin South.

As for the debate? Ian O’Doherty from the Indo (could blog about him but his ego is big enough already) versus Donie Cassidy, FF’s Leader in the Seanad were shouting at each other a lot. Senator Alex White with an eye to Dublin South did cool former RTE staff member impressions in an open necked shirt saying the Seanad was not great at all really. Senator David Norris talked about how great University Senators were. Lots of FF senators in audience said why they were great and the Green’s Dan Boyle looked a bit bored but he and Senator Deirdre de Burca said their Minister John Gormley would fix it all. (Prediction – Gormley will soon appear in a cartoon near you in a Superman outfit!) And finally nearly everyone said it was the media’s fault that we don’t understand the Seanad.

So there you go – if you missed it you missed nothing much. Senator Fidelma Healy-Eames missed out – one day I might hear her speak if Fine Gael deem it suitable. Paschal it seems according to twitter will be on Newstalk at 9am. Expect to see/hear a lot of him.

Update: No sign of Senator Paschal Donohue on Newstalk this morning! Simon Coveney represented Fine Gael in the political discussion.

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