In a attempt to appear radical, Fine Gael are pitching a series of constitutional amendments if elected into government.
Some are cosmetic. Reducing the president’s term of office from seven to five years, the right to petition the Oireachtas.
Some are welcome. More powers to (some) Oireachtas committees.
Some are sheer populism. Cut the number of TDs. Abolish the Seanad. The party might consider looking at the UK, where instead of abolishing the Lords, there are plans to make it more democratic.
Some are controversial within Fine Gael. Gender quotas. The oddly hybrid list proposal, limited to 15 TDs. Is it a coincidence that the cabinet contains 15 people?
Some are dangerous. I’ve already said what I think of cutting judges’ pay.
I’ve long felt Bunreacht na hÉireann could do with some properly considered revisions, in particular to those sections which grant basic rights with one hand, then take them away with the other.
But we won’t get that. Instead, I fear next the election campaign could turn into a bidding war as the parties outbid each other with pointless amendments to buy votes.