European Parliament Elections (Amendment) Bill 2013: Committee and Remaining Stages

Sections 1 to 4, inclusive, agreed to.
Title agreed to.
Bill reported without amendment and received for final consideration.
Question proposed: "That the Bill do now pass".

I would like to make the point that we are not opposing the holding of the election on 23 May. We are making a point about the reduction in the number of seats. Of course, we are not against the independent commission, of which our esteemed Clerk is a member. We are against the principle of the reduction in the number of seats from 12 to 11, which the Government should have vetoed.

This is a Second Stage speech.

Senator Terry Leyden to continue, without interruption.

The Senator is wasting our time.

The Senator is lucky to have a place to waste her time in. She would have been outside the door only for Fianna Fáil.

This is not a point of order. The Senator had his say on Second Stage.

I am not making any point of order.

We can all speak on Fifth Stage.

Senator Terry Leyden is quite entitled to speak, without interruption.

I am being interrupted.

Please continue. The Senator should not invite interruptions.

I am making the point that Fianna Fáil, as the party that brought this country into the European Union, is the most pro-European party in Ireland.

That is outrageous nonsense.

Jack Lynch and Paddy Hillery went to the European Union and negotiated it. I was the Minister of State in charge of the Single European Act.

We should not forget that.

I was negotiating it on behalf of the Government. Nobody can ever point a finger at Fianna Fáil. The point I am making is that if Fianna Fáil was in power now, we would have vetoed the reduction from 12 to 11.

The Senator cannot believe he is out of power.

Senator Terry Leyden to continue, without interruption.

This is a serious point.

I was a replacement candidate for the European Parliament I contested the convention for the election in 1999.

The Senator is in a time warp.

I polled very well.

That is completely irrelevant.

The Chair will decide what is relevant and irrelevant.

The Chair needs to up his game then.

On a point of order, Senator Terry Leyden is making a point of the utmost seriousness about the Government's failure to use its veto when it was proposed the reduce the number of MEPs representing this country. The Government should listen to the point he is making.

That is the point. I have heard comments being made about our stand in this regard. We are emphasising that Fianna Fáil was the party that negotiated this country's entry into the European nion. We are very proud of this and should not run away from it. I will wish the Minister well if he is appointed as a Commissioner. I think he would make a good, able and strong Commissioner.

This is ridiculous.

He would be a strong voice on behalf of Ireland. I wish him well in that regard. We accept that the election will take place on 23 May, but we are opposed to the reduction in the number of MEPs from 12 to 11. That is all.

Question put:
The Seanad divided: Tá, 24; Níl, 11.

  • Bacik, Ivana.
  • Brennan, Terry.
  • Burke, Colm.
  • Clune, Deirdre.
  • Coghlan, Eamonn.
  • Coghlan, Paul.
  • Comiskey, Michael.
  • Conway, Martin.
  • Cummins, Maurice.
  • D'Arcy, Jim.
  • D'Arcy, Michael.
  • Hayden, Aideen.
  • Keane, Cáit.
  • Kelly, John.
  • Moloney, Marie.
  • Moran, Mary.
  • Mullins, Michael.
  • Naughton, Hildegarde.
  • Noone, Catherine.
  • O'Neill, Pat.
  • Sheahan, Tom.
  • van Turnhout, Jillian.
  • Whelan, John.
  • Zappone, Katherine.

Níl

  • Barrett, Sean D.
  • Byrne, Thomas.
  • Crown, John.
  • Cullinane, David.
  • Daly, Mark.
  • Leyden, Terry.
  • MacSharry, Marc.
  • Mooney, Paschal.
  • O'Brien, Darragh.
  • Power, Averil.
  • Wilson, Diarmuid.
Tellers: Tá, Senators Paul Coghlan and Aideen Hayden; Níl, Senators Paschal Mooney and Diarmuid Wilson.
Question declared carried.