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Dublin: 7°C Tuesday 29 September 2020
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How many people will protest against water charges today?

Here’s everything you need to know about what’s happening in Irish politics right now…

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Everyone’s talking about… 

Politicians are playing the numbers game when it comes to today’s Right2Water demonstration in the vicinity of Leinster House. Those on the government side hope a relatively low turnout will indicate that last month’s announcement of lower charges has taken the sting out of the protest movement.

Launch of Plan to Tackle Homelessness. Ministers Paudie Coffey and Alan Kelly Source: Sam Boal/Photocall Ireland

But the opposition believes it can amass tens of thousands of people today and send a message to the government. As Richard Boyd-Barrett said in the Dáil yesterday this will be the real confidence vote in the coalition, not yesterday’s three-hour debate on a confidence motion in Enda Kenny and his ministers.

But whatever the turnout, the coalition remains firm this morning that there will be no alterations to the charges regime announced a few weeks ago. “There will be no change,” junior minister Paudie Coffey told Morning Ireland.

The agenda 

  • 9.30am: The banking inquiry holds one of its final private meetings at Leinster House before moving into public session next week. 
  • 10am: The Justice Committee discusses the effects of gangland crime on local communities with various advocacy groups.
  • 12pm: Enda Kenny is up for his usual Wednesday afternoon questioning by opposition leaders.
  • 1pm: The Right2Water protest is scheduled to get under way outside Leinster House.
  • 7.30pm: The debate on a motion calling on the Dáil to recognise the state of Palestine will conclude with landmark vote. The government is not opposing the motion. 

Inside Leinster House

The day after burying his father Jackie, Michael Healy-Rae was back at work in Leinster House yesterday with condolences offered to the Kerry South deputy by many TDs and staff who bumped into him throughout the day. Healy-Rae was wearing a black tie and, of course, his trademark cap.

What the others are saying… 

  • Lawyers for former finance minister Ray MacSharry have written to the Public Accounts Committee seeking access to the Ansbacher dossier the Irish Independent reports. 
  • Most of the papers report that Alan Shatter is not proceeding with his claim of “reasonable apprehension of bias” against Séan Guerin, the barrister whose report led to the minister’s resignation in May.

In case you missed it 

On the tweet machine

They finished up late last night… 

About the author:

Hugh O'Connell

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