Tuesday, 11 June 2019
An tOrd Gnó - Order of Business
It is good to remember, a Chathaoirligh, and, as Senator Ó Donnghaile, has talked about reconciliation, we should also remember our past so we can forge our the future.
Senator Paddy Burke raised the issue of the Committee on Procedure of the Dáil and the Committee on Procedure and Privileges of the Seanad, on which the Cathaoirleach commented, and the apology by the Ceann Comhairle to Angela Kerins. It is time that we, as a House, took a stand, independent and separate from the Lower House. We are joined to the Lower House as, constitutionally, we are part of the Oireachtas. The people decided not to abolish this House. There is an obligation and duty on us as custodians of this House to stand up for it. I believe some of the Members of the Dáil Business Committee would rather that we were not here at all. We should have an honest discussion at the Committee on Procedure and Privileges on how we are viewed, our role under the Constitution, and where we are in the Oireachtas. We should not allow for the airbrushing or removal of Seanad Éireann or its Members from committees, or from dealing with certain issues pertaining to the matters of the Houses of the Oireachtas. I concur with Senator Paddy Burke's sentiments on this matter.
I wish all members of the Conservative Party running for election every success. As Senator Feighan said, I hope they remember that we are their nearest neighbours and that Brexit will have an impact on us.
I welcome Mr. Glenham Smith from Virginia in the USA, who is here as part of an internship programme for the summer months. I wish him well on his first day in Leinster House. I also welcome our former colleague, Mr. Michael Mullins, to the House and wish him well. If he is intent on making a return, a Chathaoirligh-----