Government of the 33rd Dáil


The Government of the 33rd Dáil or the 32nd Government of Ireland is the government of Ireland which was formed on 27 June 2020, following negotiations on a programme for government for a coalition government of Fianna Fáil, Fine Gael and the Green Party that followed the 2020 general election to Dáil Éireann held on 8 February. Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin will serve as Taoiseach, with Fine Gael leader Leo Varadkar serving as Tánaiste. It has been agreed that the government will last until December 2022, after which the positions will rotate, with Varadkar forming a new government as Taoiseach, and Martin serving as Tánaiste.[1] It is the first time that Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael have participated in the same government, which Varadkar has suggested signifies the end of what has often been referred to as Civil War politics.[2][3]

Government of the 33rd Dáil
32nd Government of Ireland
Date formed27 June 2020
People and organisations
PresidentMichael D. Higgins
TaoiseachMicheál Martin
TánaisteLeo Varadkar
No. of ministers15
Member parties
  •   Fianna Fáil
  •   Fine Gael
  •   Green Party
Status in legislatureMajority (coalition)
84 / 160(53%)
Opposition cabinetSinn Féin Front Bench
Opposition partySinn Féin
Opposition leaderMary Lou McDonald
History
Election(s)2020 general election
Legislature term(s)33rd Dáil
26th Seanad
Budget(s)2021
Incoming formation2020 government formation
Predecessor31st Government

32nd Government of Ireland


Nomination of Taoiseach

The members of the 33rd Dáil first met on 20 February. Taoiseach and Fine Gael leader Leo Varadkar, Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin, Sinn Féin leader Mary Lou McDonald and Green Party leader Eamon Ryan were each proposed for nomination as Taoiseach. None of the four motions were successful. Varadkar announced that he would resign as Taoiseach but that under the provisions of Article 28.11 of the Constitution, the members of the government would continue to carry out their duties until their successors were appointed.[4][5]

On 27 June, the Dáil again debated nominations for the position of Taoiseach. The nomination of Martin was approved by the Dáil.[6] Martin was then appointed as Taoiseach by President Michael D. Higgins.[7][8]

27 June 2020
Nomination of Micheál Martin (FF) as Taoiseach

Motion proposed by Norma Foley and seconded by James O'Connor
Absolute majority: 81/160[9]
Vote Parties Votes
Y YesFianna Fáil (37), Fine Gael (35), Green Party (12), Independents (9)
93 / 160
NoSinn Féin (37), Independents (7), Labour Party (6), Social Democrats (6), Solidarity–People Before Profit (5), Aontú (1), Right To Change (1)
63 / 160
AbstainIndependents (3)
3 / 160
Not votingCeann Comhairle (1)
1 / 160

Members of the Government

After his appointment as Taoiseach by the president, Micheál Martin proposed the members of the government and they were approved by the Dáil.[8][10][11] They were appointed by the president on the same day.[12][13][14]

Office Name Term Party
Taoiseach Micheál Martin[lower-alpha 1] 2020– Fianna Fáil
Tánaiste Leo Varadkar 2020– Fine Gael
Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment[lower-alpha 2]
Minister for the Environment, Climate and Communications[lower-alpha 3] Eamon Ryan 2020– Green
Minister for Transport[lower-alpha 4]
Minister for Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media[lower-alpha 5] Catherine Martin 2020– Green
Minister for Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth[lower-alpha 6] Roderic O'Gorman 2020– Green
Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe 2020– Fine Gael
Minister for Foreign Affairs[lower-alpha 7] Simon Coveney 2020– Fine Gael
Minister for Defence
Minister for Justice[lower-alpha 8] Helen McEntee 2020– Fine Gael
Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science[lower-alpha 9] Simon Harris 2020– Fine Gael
Minister for Rural and Community Development Heather Humphreys 2020– Fine Gael
Minister for Social Protection[lower-alpha 10]
Minister for Education[lower-alpha 11] Norma Foley 2020– Fianna Fáil
Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage[lower-alpha 12] Darragh O'Brien 2020– Fianna Fáil
Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Barry Cowen 2020 Fianna Fáil
Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Michael McGrath 2020– Fianna Fáil
Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly 2020– Fianna Fáil

Changes 15 July 2020

Following the sacking of Barry Cowen on 14 July 2020.[27][15][28][29]

Office Name Term Party
Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Dara Calleary 2020 Fianna Fáil

Changes 2 September 2020

Following the resignation of Dara Calleary on 21 August 2020.[30][31][32][33]

Office Name Term Party
Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Charlie McConalogue 2020– Fianna Fáil

Change 27 April 2021

Temporary appointment during the maternity leave of Helen McEntee.[34][35][36][37][38]

Office Name Term Party
Minister for Justice Heather Humphreys Apr. to Oct. 2021 Fine Gael
Minister without portfolio Helen McEntee Apr. to Oct. 2021 Fine Gael
  1. Martin served as Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine between the sacking of Cowen on 14 July 2020 and the appointment of Calleary to government on 15 July 2020.[15] He served again from 21 August to 2 September 2020 after the resignation of Calleary.
  2. On 10 November 2020, the Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation was renamed the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment.[16]
  3. On 24 September 2020, the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment was renamed the Department of the Environment, Climate and Communications.[17]
  4. On 17 September 2020, the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport was renamed the Department of Transport.[18]
  5. On 30 September 2020, the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht was renamed the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media.[19]
  6. On 15 October 2020, the Department of Children and Youth Affairs was renamed the Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth.[20]
  7. On 24 September 2020, the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade was renamed the Department of Foreign Affairs.[21]
  8. On 1 November 2020, the Department of Justice and Equality was renamed the Department of Justice.[22]
  9. On 2 August 2020, the Department of Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science was established. Harris was a minister without portfolio until that date.[23]
  10. On 21 October 2020, the Employment Affairs and Social Protection was renamed the Department of Social Protection.[24]
  11. On 22 October 2020, the Education and Skills was renamed the Department of Education.[25]
  12. On 30 September 2020, the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government was renamed the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage.[26]

Attorney General

Paul Gallagher SC was appointed by the president as Attorney General on the nomination of the Taoiseach, a role he had previously served in from 2007 to 2011.[8][13]

Ministers of State

On 27 June 2020, the government on the nomination of the Taoiseach appointed Dara Calleary, TD, Hildegarde Naughton, TD, and Sen. Pippa Hackett as Ministers of State, each of whom attend at cabinet without a vote.[8] Pippa Hackett is the first senator to have been appointed as a Minister of State. On 1 July, the government appointed a further seventeen Ministers of State on the nomination of the Taoiseach.[39][13][14]

Name Department(s) Responsibility Party
Dara Calleary
(In attendance at cabinet)
Taoiseach[40]
Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht
Transport, Tourism and Sport
Government Chief Whip
Gaeltacht and Sport
Fianna Fáil
Hildegarde Naughton
(In attendance at cabinet)
Transport[41]
Environment, Climate and Communications
International and Road Transport and Logistics
Postal Policy and Eircodes
Fine Gael
Pippa Hackett
(In attendance at cabinet)
Agriculture, Food and the Marine[42] Land Use and Biodiversity Green
Thomas Byrne Taoiseach
Foreign Affairs
European Affairs Fianna Fáil
Patrick O'Donovan Public Expenditure and Reform Office of Public Works Fine Gael
Ossian Smyth Public Expenditure and Reform
Environment, Climate and Communications
Public Procurement and eGovernment
Communications and the Circular Economy
Green
Jack Chambers Finance Financial Services, Credit Unions and Insurance Fianna Fáil
Josepha Madigan Education[43] Special Education and Inclusion Fine Gael
Martin Heydon Agriculture, Food and the Marine Research & Development, Farm Safety and New Market Development Fine Gael
Anne Rabbitte Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth[44]
Health[45]
Disability Fianna Fáil
Colm Brophy Foreign Affairs Overseas Development Aid and Diaspora Fine Gael
Charlie McConalogue Justice Law Reform Fianna Fáil
Niall Collins Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science Skills and Further Education Fianna Fáil
Joe O'Brien Rural and Community Development[46]
Social Protection
Community Development and Charities Green
Peter Burke Housing, Local Government and Heritage[47] Local Government and Planning Fine Gael
Malcolm Noonan Housing, Local Government and Heritage[48] Heritage and Electoral Reform Green
Robert Troy Enterprise, Trade and Employment[49] Trade Promotion Fianna Fáil
Damien English Enterprise, Trade and Employment[50]
Social Protection
Employment Affairs and Retail Businesses Fine Gael
Mary Butler Health[51] Mental Health and Older People Fianna Fáil
Frank Feighan Health[52] Public Health, Well Being and National Drugs Strategy Fine Gael

Changes 15 July 2020

Following the appointment of Calleary to Government.[28]

Name Department(s) Responsibility Party
Jack Chambers
(In attendance at cabinet)
Taoiseach[53]
Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media[54]
Government Chief Whip
Gaeltacht and Sport
Fianna Fáil
Seán Fleming[55] Finance Financial Services, Credit Unions and Insurance Fianna Fáil

Changes 2 September 2020

Following the appointment of McConalogue to Government.[31]

Name Department(s) Responsibility Party
James Browne Justice[56] Law Reform Fianna Fáil

Change 17 November 2020

Additional assignment.[57]

Name Department(s) Responsibility Party
Jack Chambers
(In attendance at cabinet)
Defence Defence Fianna Fáil

Change 27 April 2021

Additional assignments during the maternity leave of Helen McEntee.[37]

Name Department(s) Responsibility Party
Hildegarde Naughton
(In attendance at cabinet)
Justice[58] Criminal justice Fine Gael
James Browne Justice[59] Civil justice and immigration Fianna Fáil

Events during the government

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Barry Cowen was sacked on 14 July 2020 because of driving offences which he had committed but not disclosed to Micheál Martin prior to his appointment to cabinet.[27] He was replaced by Dara Calleary.

Legislation was passed to allow each of three Ministers of State who attend cabinet meetings to receive an allowance, as previous legislation had provided an allowance for two only.[60] After public dissatisfaction with the proposal, the three ministers of state agreed on 28 July 2020 to share the existing allowance between them, rather than accept the increase.[61]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Dara Calleary resigned on 21 August 2020 after the fallout from the Oireachtas Golf Society scandal.[30] Phil Hogan resigned as European Commissioner for Trade on 26 August 2020 in response to the same events.[62]

In October 2020, Village magazine published a claim that Leo Varadkar had provided a copy of a confidential document to the head of the National Association of General Practitioners that had been part of negotiations with the Irish Medical Organisation in April 2019 while Taoiseach.[63] Fine Gael issued a statement which described the article as "both inaccurate and grossly defamatory", and while accepting that the provision of the agreement by private channels was "not best practice", said there was nothing unlawful about what had occurred.[64] Sinn Féin tabled a motion of no confidence in the Tánaiste. In response, the Taoiseach moved a motion of confidence, with was carried by a vote of 92 to 65.[65]

See also


References


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