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Irish Fianna Fáil Party required to vote for Partnerships

Timothy Kincaid

December 4th, 2009

From Irish Central

Irish Justice Minister Dermot Ahern refused to allow party colleagues to abstain or vote against a new bill legalizing civil partnerships for gay couples.

He banned the so-called “freedom of conscience” clause for colleagues to defy the government and vote against the bill.

With other minority parties supporting the bill, it is expected to pass.



Chris McCoy
December 4th, 2009 | LINK

I’m not Irish, and I don’t have an in-depth understanding of Irish law, but this is surely unethical.

People should be allowed to vote their conscience, even if we disagree with the results.

Representatives can rally under the banner of “I didn’t want to vote for it, I was forced to.”

Forcing people to vote against their conscience, against their will, will only increase animosity towards the glbt community.

This isn’t victory. This is cheating.

December 4th, 2009 | LINK

This isn’t news. Strong party discipline is bog standard in parliamentary systems when it comes to executive driven legislation. Indeed, one could say that one of the reasons Europe is ahead of the US on relationship recognition has a lot to do with the nature of the party systems in Europe.

December 4th, 2009 | LINK

As was said this is how parliamentary systems work. People vote for parties, not candidates, so if a member defies his party and the coalition, it’s violating the people’s desires and not properly representing them. Cheating in this case would be if some broke party ranks to vote for this.

Timothy (TRiG)
December 9th, 2009 | LINK

If a Fianna Fáil TD wants to vote against this, he can. The price for that will be that he will be thrown out of the party. It’s called parliamentary whip. Standard practice. It’s suspended on some bills, but not on this one.


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