Former Government Minister Pat Rabbitte has said that he fears for Irish politics, following the results of the recent by-elections.
Former Labour TD Rabbitte believes that the recession has caused a fragmentation with voters, where “populist” independent candidates, who he claims “can’t agree on anything” once they get elected.
Paul Murphy of the Anti Austerity Alliance came top of the polls in Dublin South West on Saturday. Whilst fellow Independent Michael Fitzmaurice fought off competition from Fianna Fáil in Roscommon South Leitrim.
Mr Rabbitte believes if the rise in independents continues at such a trend, it could prove difficult to form a Government following the next General Election.
He said; “It’s not a solution to the challenges that confront the country now – and [with] further fragmentation, it could be very, very difficult to put together a Government “I think commentators have become complacent that ever since 1989 … [begins imitation]: ‘ah, sure, they’ll put a government together, don’t you worry about that. They’ll manage to swallow some of their pride and their policies, and they’ll put a Government together. “I’m not so sure,” he said.
Rabbitte also suggested that it would be foolish for the coalition government to go on a spending spree in Tuesday’s budget.
According to reports it is understood that the Cabinet will spend up to €2bn in a bid to win over voters, but Mr Rabbitte said that would not be wise.