PDs play the race card

The Minister for Justice has this morning published his long-awaited Immigration Bill.

It's a huge piece of legislation which doesn't so much overhaul the current unfair, inefficient, non-rights-based regime as put it on a statutory footing (in such a way as to nonetheless leave him an unacceptable amount of discretion in many crucial matters). There is absolutely no chance of it clearing the Oireachtas before the election - unless the Minister intends rushing it through with little or no debate, something I don't think even he would have the neck to do.

So why publish it now? Clearly there is one reason, and one reason only: to use it as part of his election manifesto. To tell voters that if they return him and his party colleagues to office, this xenophobe's charter will become law. It is campaigning on the issue of immigration and thus effectively, unavoidably, playing the race card - something that violates at least the spirit of the anti-racism protocol that all 26 County parties signed up to before the last elections.

Shameful. But not in the least surprising.

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