some senior civil servants are reluctant to propose legislation because they can't get their way 100%


Well-known member
Nov 16, 2009
Civil Servants still don't 'propose' legislation.

If a minister wants to achieve a policy, civil servants give him or her their options for securing that policy. If the minister wants to pursue an option that requires legislation, then they instruct civil servants to go through the legislative process.

Usually, ministers and civil servants alike will prefer non legislative routes. Even when there is a parliamentary majority for the Government, legislation takes time and effort, and in the past, there's been a premium on Parliamentary time available for legislation, so Departments have to bid to take through legislation.

But if the only way to achieve a policy is through legislation, it's not for civil servants to 'propose' it. It's for ministers to determine their policy preferences.

Laying what is, ultimately, a ministerial decision at the door of civil servants makes no sense.
Of course civil servants propose legislation, that's their job. A Minister cant know everything that is required, lots of technical issues ect. that a politician wouldn't have a clue about.


Well-known member
Nov 27, 2009
"In the reality of the current political situation, the Government has to be prudent about what it brings forward because it has to win support for it.“Some of those behind Government are even far more cautious than the politicians would be when they’re prepared to try.

So departments or these senior figures are to blame for foot-dragging in the Dáil, I inquire? “Exactly,” says Mr Ó Fearghaíl
To quote Mandy Rice-Davies - "well he would say that, wouldn't he?"

When any TD is asked a question that offers him/her the alternative of criticising their fellow TDs or someone else, it's pretty bloody obvious that they're going to criticise someone else.

I assume that Mr. McEnroe, journalist extraordinare, immediately asked Deputy O'Farrell to give a couple of examples. And Deputy O'Farrelly complied.

Unfortunately, for some reason, the Examiner failed to print that bit of the interview.

New Threads

Popular Threads

Most Replies

Top Bottom