Enda Kenny did decide last Autumn not to hold the General Election on November 20th, which was the preferred date of his advisors, and most of the national media. Time has moved on fast, and now we are near the end of January 2016.
At this time, the Labour party percentage continues to stall in single figures, but they are holding their party conference this weekend in Mullingar, Co. Westmeath. Joan Burton will figure heavily in the media over the weekend, as did Taoiseach Enda Kenny last week, and Michael Martin of Fianna Fail the week before. Rumour has it that Kenny will go to Aras an Uachtarain a day or two after Labour leaves Mullingar to ask President Higgins to dissolve the Dail to facilitate a General Election. The expected date is Friday, February 26th.
He will probably look at Fine Gael’s secret poll figures, and if have plunged down into the twenties (they are currently on 31%), he could hold off for a week or two. But all bets are on February 26th, writes David Flynn.
As soon as the election is called, the media coverage goes into lockdown, and all the parties, and Independents are supposed to get an equal slice of the coverage. Therefore if a party conference was to take place during an election campaign, the leader of the party couldn’t expect the blanket coverage that they would get if it wasn’t election time. On the surface, it would appear that Sinn Fein are the party being left out of that loop, because they aren’t holding their conference until April. However they might be as well off, because at the end of the day, the real folk impressed with the party talk at conferences, are the party folk themselves.