Tuesday, 21 January 2020
Business of Seanad: Motion
That, notwithstanding anything in Standing Orders, and having regard to the dissolution of Dáil Éireann on 14th January, 2020, Standing Orders 16, 29 and 30 shall stand suspended in respect of the sitting of Seanad Éireann on Tuesday, 21st January, 2020.
I welcome the Members. As I am not contesting the election, I take this opportunity to thank the multitude of people who have supported, advised, encouraged and canvassed for me over the last 14 years. It has been a privilege to serve my constituents since I entered the Dáil in 2007. With this privilege comes responsibility, whereby one puts one's life on hold. Every Member, regardless of party, has done that. We are all here to serve rather than be served, and sometimes it is for 24 hours per day. That commitment requires the support of an army of people around us including our staff - I compliment my staff, Ruth and Conor, and all the people who worked for me over the years - and family. That support has been there at all times.
I thank you, a Chathaoirligh, and all the Seanad staff for their courtesy and guidance when supporting me in the performance of my duties, whatever they may have been. It was above and beyond the call of duty over the years. I wish colleagues in my party and colleagues in this House, irrespective of party, well in the forthcoming elections to the Lower House and to this House. Politicians in all parties give an enormous commitment. We seldom agree on policies, procedures or whatever is at issue, but for as long as I have been involved and for as long as I will be watching from outside I always admire those who put their name on a ballot paper. I wish everybody well in their future careers, be it inside or outside politics.