Image Credit: Niall Carson/PA Archive via
May. 21.

Waffle Wednesday: The Elections

ww-posters-thWe’re nearly there. By the end of the week we will see a drastic reduction in the amount of litter on our streets, and by that I mean the election leaflets and posters will have gone away for another couple of years. But there is still the question of just who to vote for on Friday. Who do I want representing me in my local council and in Europe?

Well, we may as well start at home with the local elections. I’m in the Killiney/Shankill area of Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council. We have 6 seats to fill, and, unfortunately I can’t think of 6 candidates that would be suitable to fill them. It’s difficult to pick through all the claims of working for the community, that they’re always here for us etc. I’m going to be going with a policy of “do you have experience in visibly working for the area to make sure you can do what you can for those living there” as opposed to voting for any one particular party. To that end there are two candidates who actually deserve my vote. There would have been a third, but as he is retiring and not contesting this election, I obviously can’t vote for him.

Image Credit: Niall Carson/PA Archive via

Image Credit: Niall Carson/PA Archive via

That leaves me with 4 seats that I can’t really see people filling. That worries me, as even though I can’t see people filling them, someone has to, and it makes me wary about just who will be given the nod. I have a feeling it will be the same right across the council, and right across the country, leading to very volatile councils with no one party or coalition having control, and this could to a very messy 5 years.

Unfortunately, when it comes to the European Parliament elections, the situation is even worse. I’m in the Dublin area for the European elections, and to be completely honest, none of the candidates speak to me, in any way, about why they deserve my vote. I literally do not have a fucking clue about who to vote for on Friday. And as someone who feels compelled to vote, this makes me feel very uneasy. How can I vote when I have no clue about who will properly represent my views in Europe? Do I really want someone I don’t know anything about passing pan-European laws? By not voting, I can’t say I helped to prevent someone not worthy of a seat from getting in. Likewise if I spoil my vote (which I did do once before, on Lisbon 2. I agreed with it, but felt it was wrong to vote on the same thing again, because the result wasn’t what was wanted the first time) I can at least say I made my voice heard, but it doesn’t contribute anything to anyone.

Image credit: Reuters via

Image credit: Reuters via

So, what am I to do? Should I spend the next 48 hours feverishly trying to learn what each European candidate stands for, in order to decide which one is for me? Do I maintain the status quo, and return a sitting MEP to Europe? Or Do I spoil my vote and give nobody my precious number 1 (or to a certain Socialist candidate, my number 1 or highest possible preference – I thought that meant number 1)?

Either way, the next week or so is going to be quite interesting.


By Robyn | Posted in Politics, Thoughts, Waffle Wednesday | Post a comment or leave a trackback: Trackback URL.

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  • I’m in much the same position here to be honest. I’m in Longford/Westmeath. I have a fair idea of who to vote for in the local and that’s it – but one of the men I know I could go to to raise an issue is a member of Fine Gael, so do I vote for him because of pothole politics or leave him off the ballot because of what they’ve done to the country as a party?! We have an extra thing to vote for, a by-election – and I have never seen any of them before. I haven’t a clue what they do. I’m leaning towards one independent man because he seems to know what issues need attention locally but will he do anything? I can’t NOT vote. I have to vote. But who the hell do I send to Europe?!

    • That’s it exactly! The two people I know work well for the community are both Labour, and I fear they will suffer from the association, which is a pity, because they are actually great public representatives. For the rest, I’m lost!

  • I have found a couple of local election candidates I am happy to vote for, but the rest don’t exactly fill me with confidence so my trickle down preferences are going to be difficult. I have been trying to find out candidates stance on abortion, marriage equality and fluoride. I know county councils have no control over these things, but I had to figure out some way of making a decision and this is what I came up with. Although, it hasn’t helped much as candidates are either telling you what they think you want to hear, ignoring your questions or not wanting to state their stance on anything specific. Sigh.

    As for the European Elections, I have no earthly clue who to vote for. There’s three candidates running from my party in Ireland South, but one of them hasn’t disclosed his expenses for his time already spent as an MEP, I’m not a huge fan of the second candidate and while I like the third guy I honestly think he could do much more if he stayed in Dail Eireann. So, I’m stumped. If I apply the pro-choice (again, because I have to decide somehow so why not on an issue I care about) criteria I’m pretty sure that only leaves me with the Labour candidate. Or possibly Sinn Fein, I don’t know the individual candidate’s opinion here but, either way, I still can’t quite bring myself to vote Sinn Fein.

    For the first time, in a long time, voting is going to feel like a chore as opposed to something I enjoy doing.

  • I have to say, I find election time very annoying as half these people only seem to appear from the shadows once they need you for something! Have no idea what I’m going to do voting wise!

    • I have the same problem here. Most candidates are new and have just been trying to get their face out there the past few months. One insists she works for the community all the time, not just at elections. Trouble is, the last time I saw her was 5 years ago, staring at me from a lamp post.

Go on, talk to me. I don't bite!


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