I think it was Joe Higgins who originated, with magnificent disdain, the term “the establishment parties”.
Notwithstanding what he might say, I doubt he ever envisaged “the establishment parties” being downsized to the extent seen in Election 2016. Smaller parties have come and gone since independence, but the traditional
parties of Fianna Fáil, Fine Gael and Labour have alternated power since the state was founded.
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