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April 13, 2017 · 3:18 pm

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Patriotism, as I understand it, is a combination of love of country, pride in its history, traditions and culture, and a determination to add to its prestige and achievements” -Lemass

Welcome to my website. I hope that it can be a useful resource in staying up to date with my work on your behalf in Seanad Eireann as Deputy Leader of Fianna Fáil and Spokesperson for Foreign Affairs, the Irish Overseas and Diaspora.

If you have any queries, questions or ideas please do not hesitate to contact me.

Is mise le meas,

Senator Mark Daly

Seanadóir Marcus O’Dalaigh

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Irish Government urged to include border vote in national risk report

https://www.itv.com/news/2019-06-23/irish-government-urged-to-include-border-vote-in-national-risk-report/

itv.com

23/06/19

article_update_2.30727628.jpg
The border between Londonderry and Donegal at Bridgend Photo: Deborah McAleese/PA

The Irish Government’s refusal to include the possibility of a border poll in its report on threats to the country’s economy has left a void, a Fianna Fail senator has claimed.

Party senator Mark Daly accused the Government of neglecting policy by not including any future referendum on removing the Irish border in its National Risk Assessment.

The national assessment identifies geopolitical, economic, environmental, social and technological risks to the Irish economy.

Mr Daly and Fianna Fail TD Sean Fleming have issued a joint submission to the Government’s draft assessment consultation urging Taoiseach Leo Varadkar to address the possibility of a united Ireland.

Senator Mark Daly, who has called for the Irish Government to include the possibility of a border poll in its National Risk Assessment
Senator Mark Daly, who has called for the Irish Government to include the possibility of a border poll in its National Risk Assessment Credit: PA

The island has been divided into two separate jurisdictions since 1921.

The report will carry out a wide-ranging assessment of threats including global warming, cyber security, terrorism, the healthcare crisis, the housing crisis as well as the possibility of another referendum on Scottish independence.

Mr Daly said there is a necessity for policy preparation on a united Ireland.

Deputy Fleming said: “This leaves a void in the National Risk Assessment process.

“What other issues has the Taoiseach decided are too sensitive to be dealt with in the National Risk Assessment and have been hidden from the people of Ireland?”

Mr Daly said that the Brexit referendum has taught Ireland an “important lesson”.

“You do not hold a referendum until there is debate and discussion with all sides and all necessary preparations are made,” he added.

“Policy neglect seldom goes unpunished and this is very true of the lack of policy preparation for a referendum on a new Agreed Ireland by the Government.”

Mr Daly accused Mr Varadkar and the Government of failing to listen to other leaders including British Prime Minister Theresa May and DUP leader Arlene Foster, who raised the issue of a border poll.

Last month, an RTE exit poll suggested there is significant support among Irish voters for a united Ireland.

The poll found that 65% of voters polled indicated they would vote in favour of a united Ireland if a referendum was held tomorrow.

It also found that 19% would vote against the proposal, and 15% of respondents said they did not know or refused to answer the question.

Following two years of often strained negotiations between the EU and the UK, Mr Daly said that Brexit “has and will” change everything.

In 2017, the joint committee on the Implementation of the Good Friday Agreement published its report, Brexit and the future of Ireland: Uniting Ireland and its people in peace and prosperity.

The report, compiled by Mr Daly, details the steps needed to achieve a united Ireland.

Mr Daly said: “None of the 17 recommendations put forth by the joint committee have been carried out by the Government to date, despite being adopted unanimously in July 2017.

“These key recommendations should be implemented as a matter of extreme urgency.”

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Government ‘hiding’ risk of border poll by omission

daly risk examiner.PNG

https://www.irishexaminer.com/breakingnews/ireland/government-hiding-risk-of-border-poll-by-omission-932500.html?fbclid=IwAR300FT_cFgIq7K2UyCLchS4APYXJ9mZ9TGX2GbFgnehEVKy5W9-xuf-Tnk

examiner

By Elaine Loughlin for The Irish Examinier

24/06/19

The Government has been accused of “hiding”’ sensitive issues from the public after it emerged that the possibility of a border poll will not be included in the National Risk Assessment.

While global warming, cyber security, the healthcare crisis, and even another referendum on Scottish independence are included in the draft report, the Government has not included the possibility of a referendum to unite Ireland in its assessment.

Fianna Fáil TD Seán Fleming and senator Mark Daly said the omission and the claim from the Taoiseach that a border poll is not a risk leaves “a void” in the Government’s preparedness.

The two politicians will send a joint submission to the Government’s 2019 Draft National Risk Assessment today, asking that a future referendum on Irish unity be included in the final report.

The National Risk Assessment, published each year, is an opportunity to take a bird’s eye view of the most critical threats facing the country, and identifies strategic risks to Ireland’s future wellbeing.

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar has previously said he would like to see a united Ireland in his lifetime.

“I foresee a united Ireland at some point in the future,” he said in 2016, when he was Social Protection Minister.

However, responding to Mr. Fleming through a recent parliamentary question, Mr. Varadkar said the issue “would not be regarded as a risk” in the context of the annual assessment.

He added that “the very important and sensitive policy issue related to it would not be dealt with in the Risk Assessment process”.

Mr Fleming said:

This reply leaves a void in the National Risk Assessment process. What other issues has the Taoiseach decided are too sensitive to be dealt with in the National Risk Assessment and have been hidden from the people of Ireland?

In March, Mr Daly wrote to the Taoiseach, Tánaiste Simon Coveney, all ministers, and chairs of the Government’s Risk Committee, to request their policy preparations on uniting the people of Ireland. To date, none have been received.

Mr Daly said: “As I have said before, the Brexit referendum has taught Ireland an important lesson: You do not hold a referendum until there is debate and discussion with all sides and all necessary preparations are made.

“Policy neglect seldom goes unpunished and this is very true of the lack of policy preparation for a referendum on a new agreed Ireland by the Government.”

He said the Taoiseach and his Government must now consider the implications of a border poll, especially in the context of Brexit.

He said Sylvia Hermon, Independent Unionist MP for North Down, was right when she said Brexit will change everything and that she is now certain there will be a border poll in her lifetime.

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Irish Government urged to include border vote in national risk report

https://www.independent.ie/breaking-news/irish-news/irish-government-urged-to-include-border-vote-in-national-risk-report-38246053.html?fbclid=IwAR1CaUr-K4cEh9_-2dZhzwJoOtrTNZuxZhidGKwjY5dXaZezcCYWeySs2VQ

Last month, an exit poll suggested there is significant support among Irish voters for a united Ireland.

By Cate McCurry, Press Association for the Irish Independent

23/06/19

 

The Irish Government’s refusal to include the possibility of a border poll in its report on threats to the country’s economy has left a void, a Fianna Fail senator has claimed.

Party senator Mark Daly accused the Government of neglecting policy by not including any future referendum on removing the Irish border in its National Risk Assessment.

The national assessment identifies geopolitical, economic, environmental, social and technological risks to the Irish economy.

Mr Daly and Fianna Fail TD Sean Fleming have issued a joint submission to the Government’s draft assessment consultation urging Taoiseach Leo Varadkar to address the possibility of a united Ireland.

The island has been divided into two separate jurisdictions since 1921.

The report will carry out a wide-ranging assessment of threats including global warming, cyber security, terrorism, the healthcare crisis, the housing crisis as well as the possibility of another referendum on Scottish independence.

Mr Daly said there is a necessity for policy preparation on a united Ireland.

Deputy Fleming said: “This leaves a void in the National Risk Assessment process.

“What other issues has the Taoiseach decided are too sensitive to be dealt with in the National Risk Assessment and have been hidden from the people of Ireland?”

Mr Daly said that the Brexit referendum has taught Ireland an “important lesson”.

“You do not hold a referendum until there is debate and discussion with all sides and all necessary preparations are made,” he added.

“Policy neglect seldom goes unpunished and this is very true of the lack of policy preparation for a referendum on a new Agreed Ireland by the Government.”

Mr Daly accused Mr Varadkar and the Government of failing to listen to other leaders including British Prime Minister Theresa May and DUP leader Arlene Foster, who raised the issue of a border poll.

Last month, an RTE exit poll suggested there is significant support among Irish voters for a united Ireland.

The poll found that 65% of voters polled indicated they would vote in favour of a united Ireland if a referendum was held tomorrow.

It also found that 19% would vote against the proposal, and 15% of respondents said they did not know or refused to answer the question.

Following two years of often strained negotiations between the EU and the UK, Mr Daly said that Brexit “has and will” change everything.

In 2017, the joint committee on the Implementation of the Good Friday Agreement published its report, Brexit and the future of Ireland: Uniting Ireland and its people in peace and prosperity.

The report, compiled by Mr Daly, details the steps needed to achieve a united Ireland.

Mr Daly said: “None of the 17 recommendations put forth by the joint committee have been carried out by the Government to date, despite being adopted unanimously in July 2017.

“These key recommendations should be implemented as a matter of extreme urgency.”

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Government urged to include border vote in national risk report

https://www.breakingnews.ie/ireland/government-urged-to-include-border-vote-in-national-risk-report-932590.html?fbclid=IwAR3YtNmizqGzzetRTfhVg1A8kJoQ8yaAD7FUG3_avMUaU8PNWHWLptv56Ho

2.30727628.jpg

Breakingnews.ie

24/06/19

The Government’s refusal to include the possibility of a border poll in its report on threats to the country’s economy has left a void, a Fianna Fáil senator has claimed.

Mark Daly accused the Government of neglecting policy by not including any future referendum on removing the Irish border in its National Risk Assessment.

The national assessment identifies geopolitical, economic, environmental, social and technological risks to the economy.

Mr Daly and Fianna Fáil TD Sean Fleming have issued a joint submission to the Government’s draft assessment consultation urging Taoiseach Leo Varadkar to address the possibility of a united Ireland.

daly breakingnews risk.PNG

The report will carry out a wide-ranging assessment of threats including global warming, cyber security, terrorism, the healthcare crisis, the housing crisis as well as the possibility of another referendum on Scottish independence.

Mr Daly said there is a necessity for policy preparation on a united Ireland.

Deputy Fleming said: “This leaves a void in the National Risk Assessment process.

“What other issues has the Taoiseach decided are too sensitive to be dealt with in the National Risk Assessment and have been hidden from the people of Ireland?”

Mr Daly said that the Brexit referendum has taught Ireland an “important lesson”.

“You do not hold a referendum until there is debate and discussion with all sides and all necessary preparations are made,” he added.

“Policy neglect seldom goes unpunished and this is very true of the lack of policy preparation for a referendum on a new Agreed Ireland by the Government.”

Mr Daly accused Mr Varadkar and the Government of failing to listen to other leaders including British Prime Minister Theresa May and DUP leader Arlene Foster, who raised the issue of a border poll.

Last month, an RTE exit poll suggested there is significant support among Irish voters for a united Ireland.

The poll found that 65% of voters polled indicated they would vote in favour of a united Ireland if a referendum was held tomorrow.

It also found that 19% would vote against the proposal, and 15% of respondents said they did not know or refused to answer the question.

Following two years of often strained negotiations between the EU and the UK, Mr Daly said that Brexit “has and will” change everything.

In 2017, the joint committee on the Implementation of the Good Friday Agreement published its report, Brexit and the future of Ireland: Uniting Ireland and its people in peace and prosperity.

The report, compiled by Mr Daly, details the steps needed to achieve a united Ireland.

Mr Daly said: “None of the 17 recommendations put forth by the joint committee have been carried out by the Government to date, despite being adopted unanimously in July 2017.

“These key recommendations should be implemented as a matter of extreme urgency.”

Leave a comment

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Submission to the National Risk Assessment 2019 Deputy Sean Fleming & Senator Mark Daly

The full submission can be view here Submission to the 2019 Draft Risk Assessment 

Executive Summary

A key element of the state’s future planning is the annual National Risk Assessment. To quote the Taoiseach in his own words in the 2018 National Risk Assessment: Overview of Strategic Risks, the risk assessment “aims to counteract ‘group think’ and to ensure all parts are heard by Government.”[1]

Since the first National Risk Assessment report was published in 2014, these assessments have called attention to a number of risks that subsequently became major issues for society including Brexit, risks to EU stability, international terrorism, global warming, and risks around cyber security and housing supply. There is no mention by the government of the issues of a referendum on uniting Ireland in the 2018 National Risk Assessment signed by the Taoiseach or the 2019 Draft National Risk Assessment.

In a reply to a parliamentary question by Sean Fleming TD on the 12th of March 2019 as to why the issue of a referendum on a new agreed Ireland was not in the National Risk Assessment produced by the Taoiseach’s Department the Taoiseach replied “Although a border poll would not be regarded as a risk, and the very important and sensitive policy issue related to it would not be dealt with in the Risk Assessment process”.

While the topic of the possibility of a referendum on Scottish independence is mentioned in the section of the National Risk Assessment report titled ‘Instability in Northern Ireland’, the possibility of a referendum on a New Agreed Ireland is not mentioned. This is concerning given that the Taoiseach spoke about his desire to achieve a New Agreed Ireland on the 2nd of January 2018 as reported by CNN. “In terms of a United Ireland, our constitution is clear on this….Our constitution aspires to there being a united Ireland. I share that aspiration.”[2]

In a reply to another parliamentary question from Sean Fleming TD, the Tánaiste stated, “In the event of a future referendum within the consent provisions of the Good Friday Agreement, the Government would make all necessary preparations in accordance with the terms of the Constitution and the principles and procedures of the Agreement.” One lesson we have learned from Brexit is that you do not hold a referendum without the necessary preparation.

An Taoiseach Leo Varadkar set himself a challenge of engaging with everyone about the future of the whole island at his address to the 20th anniversary of The Good Friday Agreement, in the U.S. Library of Congress.

“There is now a particular onus on those of us who currently hold the responsibility of political leadership. We are a new generation. It is time for us to step forward and play our part. That is why we must engage young people in the future of our island. In the months and years ahead, I for one want to engage with the next generation – the Agreement Generation – to build on those achievements…Our mission now is to imagine the next twenty years. Not only to imagine it, but then to build it.”[3]

Senator Mark Daly wrote to the Taoiseach, the Tánaiste, all Ministers, Secretary Generals of all government departments, and the chairs of their Audit Committees and their Risk Committees to ask that they address the issue of a New Agreed Ireland in the National Risk Assessment and send copies of any policy plans. He received two responses addressing the request and thirteen acknowledgements of receipt of his correspondence. None of the responses included any discussion of having a New Agreed Ireland in the National Risk Assessment.

The Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade Simon Coveney TD has also said, “I would like to see a united Ireland in my lifetime. If possible, in my political Iifetime.”[4] However, when asked in a parliamentary question by Sean Fleming TD on the 12th of March 2019 why the issue of a referendum on a New Agreed Ireland was not on his department’s risk register or if his department risk committee had examined the issue the Minister could only say “In the event of a referendum within the consent provisions of the Good Friday Agreement, the government would make all necessary preparations in accordance with the terms of the constitution and the principal and procedures of the Agreement”.[5] The full questions and replies can be found in the appendix.

The Brexit referendum has taught us an important lesson: you do not hold a referendum until there is debate and discussion with all sides and all necessary preparations are made. It is widely known that policy neglect seldom goes unpunished and this is very true of the lack of policy preparation for a New Agreed Ireland by the Government.

Voices as diverse as those of the British Prime Minister; former Speaker of the US House of Representatives, Congressman Paul Ryan; DUP leader Arlene Fosters; and Lady Sylvia Herman, MP for North Down, have all spoken about the issue of a Referendum on a New Agreed Ireland or a New Agreed Ireland.

There would be economic consequences due to the lack of policy planning by the Government around a New Agreed Ireland.  Research by economists John FitzGerald of Trinity College Dublin and Edgar Morgenroth of Dublin City University shows that continued government inaction in relation to Irish reunification could come at a high price for the Republic, reducing income and living standards by as much as 15 percent.[6]

 

Gunther Thumann, a senior economist at the Germany desk for the IMF during German reunification, issued a report on the true income and expenditure of Northern Ireland in a reunification scenario. His assessment shows that the current reported budget deficit in Northern Ireland could come close to balanced in a re-unification scenario. Other research such as ‘Modelling Irish Unification’ was compiled by Dr Kurt Hubner of the University of British Columbia. It states that ‘political and economic unification of the North and South would likely result in a sizable boost in economic output and incomes in the North and a smaller boost in the ROI.’[7] However, this research and analysis was published in 2015 before Brexit. In 2018 Dr Kurt Hubner collaborated with Dr Renger Van Nieuwkoop to publish research entitled ‘The Cost of Non-Unification: Brexit and the Unification of Ireland’ which showed that over seven years, the unification of Ireland could benefit the country by €23.5 billion. The Irish Government should carry out its own cost benefit analysis in relation to the status quo and reunification.

 

The challenge facing the Irish Government or any economist trying to predict the financial benefits and costs of reunification is best explained by Gunther Thumann when he outlines all the information available. Germany is still not able to say definitively the cost of unification.

 

Perhaps more surprisingly estimates of the costs of unification continue to differ significantly even years after the event. For instance, data published by the IFO Dresden, the University of Halle and Klaus Schroeder FU Berlin 25 years after Re-Unification put net transfers per annum (over the period 1991-2014) at EUR68 billion (IFO), EUR54 billion (Halle) and EUR83 billion (FU), respectively.”[8]

 

In 2017 the Joint Committee on the Implementation of the Good Friday Agreement published its report entitled ‘Brexit & the Future of Ireland: Uniting Ireland & Its People in Peace & Prosperity’. That report is the first report by a Dáil or Senate Committee on the steps required to achieve a United Ireland as stated in articles 2 & 3 of the constitution and as provided for in the Good Friday Agreement. The recommendations of the report should now be implemented by the government as a matter of extreme urgency.

Despite the unanimous adoption of these recommendations in July 2017 by the Joint Committee on the Implementation of the Good Friday Agreement, none of these key recommendations have been carried out by the government to date.

 

We would recommend that the issue of the economic impact of a referendum on a new agreed Ireland would be included as part of the 2019 National Risk Assessment.

Overview of the National Risk Assessment Process

[1] 2018 National Risk Assessment Overview of Strategic Risks, P.4 https://assets.gov.ie/2405/261018155017-8828303ace924307816fda25dde8811c.pdf

[2] https://edition.cnn.com/2018/01/02/europe/varadkar-united-ireland-intl/index.html

[3] https://merrionstreet.ie/en/News-Room/Speeches/Speech_by_An_Taoiseach_Leo_Varadkar_T_D_at_the_Good_Friday_Agreement_20th_Anniversary_event_Capitol_Hill_Washington_DC_13_March_2018.html

[4]https://www.oireachtas.ie/en/debates/debate/joint_committee_on_the_implementation_of_the_good_friday_agreement/2017-11-23/2/

[5] https://www.oireachtas.ie/en/debates/question/2019-03-12/section/76/

[6] https://www.irishtimes.com/business/economy/united-ireland-would-see-living-standards-in-republic-fall-by-15-1.3629748

[7] https://prcg.com/modeling-irish-unification/report.pdf

[8] https://senatormarkdaly.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/research-on-northern-ireland-income-and-expenditure-1.pdf

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