Bill to reduce the number of TDs

Posted by Elaine Byrne

Deputy Brendan Griffin (Kerry South) has introduced a proposed amendment to the constitution which seeks to -

  • Hold a referendum on reducing the Dail to 101 members
  • From 100 evenly populated constituencies  
  • Retain the PRSTV system. 

Deputy Griffin says the primary purpose of the amendment is to help “ensure that the attention of parliamentarians can be more focused on parliamentary/legislative/policy issues and not on competing locally with constituency rivals, both inside and outside their parties”. He believes it would also lead to a less congested Dail. He argues that, at present, “many Deputies are waiting for weeks to raise a matter on Topical Issues and very often do not get selected high enough in the order of oral questions to have their issue discussed using that avenue”.

The Bill can be found here.

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4 thoughts on “Bill to reduce the number of TDs

  1. Poor enough that the Taoiseach won’t allow the Constitutional Convention to discuss reform of the Seanad.

    Poor enough that the Tánaiste won’t stop second guessing the Convention by calling for a referendum on gay marriage “as soon as possible”.

    Now we have a Dáil deputy introducing a bill on reform of the Dáil electoral system not six months after the two houses of the Oireacthas agreed to establish a Constitutional Convention that would deliberate on that matter! And only two days before the thing opens!

    It’s no wonder most members of the public are unaware of the Convention when deputies (even members of the government that established it) treat it with such contempt.

  2. Let me just throw this out , any problem in Ireland can be in most cases traced back to the same problem the Irish State itself. Reducing the number of TD’s is only playing around with a broken engine. Its not reform we need its to replace it completely with a system that both address local & national issues in an Irish way plus recognizes that the needs & views of a Mayo framer are very different from the single Mum in D4.
    I would propose that we follow the Swiss model of having a federal systems in Ireland based on the provinces plus Greater Dublin (Pale) which have already strong local identification & loyalty as can be seen at any Ireland rugby game or inter province GAA game. Move the new Small central government to Kilkenny.
    Each province could set its own local taxes to fund the service local people want & have different laws in relation to local issues. A small federal tax to fund central government. With Swiss style referendum system to let Irish people decide important Irish national matters. After all 1916 only change the names on the department doors.

  3. Will this Bill ever actually be debated, even on one of the sham Friday sittings of the Dáil? If it is debated, presumably the government will oppose it. Surely that will then mean Deputy Griffin will have to either vote against his own Bill or lose the whip?

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