Pro-life republican party Aontú has found itself in quite a bit of hot water this week after a number of scandals causing a rift between the party and its grassroot supporters. 

The latest of these scandals, which involves Derry GP Anne McCloskey, a former councillor for the party, has seen Mr. Peadar Tóibín’s party aggressively distance themselves from their former Deputy Leader after comments she made regarding the Covid crisis and vaccinations. Many commenters under the twitter post have lambasted the party, with many calling the statement on Twitter ‘Disappointing’ and ‘cowardly’. McCloskey previously came to loggerheads with the Aontú leadership over her statements regarding lockdowns and vaccinations, resulting in her resignation from the Council in favour of Emmet Doyle.

The scandal comes hot on the heels of another highly controversial statement put out by the republicans, which demanded that Ireland must be a ‘leader in accepting Afghan refugees’.  Again, this post was widely condemned by commentators online, with many expressing surprise, shock, and even confusion as to why the party would take such a stance.

From my point of view, this confusion is very much warranted. Aontú as a party, in splitting off from Sinn Féin over abortion, showed significant promise in regards to being a strong Nationalist party with an uncompromising conservative social outlook. The party itself proudly states that it is looking to tackle ‘Establishment Group Think’, which is no doubt a very laudable goal.

However, the party’s recent actions and words have thrown serious doubt on the hopes of many in regards to this, including myself. Both of the above statements paint a picture of a party desperate for mainstream approval, rather than one willing to stand up against the political current.

Both of these scandals represent scenarios where, unusually for a political party, it would have been better for Aontú to simply keep their mouths shut, to not say anything on these issues. 

The party would not have greatly suffered from the McCloskey scandal should they have not clarified her status as not currently being a member, and if they felt that this point really needed to be emphasized, then a few quiet emails to various outlets would have likely done the trick. Their chosen method of a public statement however, makes a mountain of a molehill, and gives the impression of turning on a former ally, over an issue of her breaking from the mainstream no less.

The refugee issue however is far more worrying than the McCloskey one. Aside from the obvious issue of prioritizing foreign problems over domestic ones, why a supposedly republican party would see it fit to try and undermine the native establishment of a country for a foreign one is beyond me. While the Taliban are far from perfect, they do indeed represent native resistance to what are effectively imperialist incursions by both the Soviets and United States. For an Irish republican party to come out against such a resistance, especially after the fighting in Afghanistan has effectively ended, is utterly preposterous.

Ultimately, while we can only speculate on what the real reasons are for the party’s actions in regards to these two incidents, we can definitively say that it gives the image of a party far too eager to please a mainstream which hates it. As a result, the party, at least from the outside, looks more and more like an element of the Irish mainstream rather than a possible alternative to it.

With this being the case, what is the point of Aontú? The party was founded, ultimately, to be a way of challenging the political mainstream. However, if the party no longer challenges the mainstream, but instead supports it on crucial issues such as immigration and social unpersoning (which it appears to be doing here, intentionally or otherwise), then why should anyone bother supporting it? If Aontú continues down this path, it will ultimately be a failure.

That being said, when I say failure, I do not mean an electoral failure. Aontú has been consistently polling rather well, especially when compared to other right-wing parties, and chances are it will make some gains in the next election. As Fianna Fáil inevitably collapses, Aontú may in fact find itself slowly becoming the newest member of a big three, serving as a counterbalance of a Fine Gael/Sinn Féin establishment.

However, while it is true that a party that is good ideologically but poor electorally is of little use, what is more useless still is a party that is poor ideologically but effective at gaining votes. Put simply, what’s the point of voting for Aontú when they don’t represent a vehicle for change? What’s the point of an Aontú government, if such a government will be no different to what has come before?

Hopefully, this week has been merely a blip in the radar, and that things will start getting back on track for the party. However, I myself worry that the party has already been derailed, and that voters will have to look elsewhere if they want to truly challenge the established understanding of Irish politics.

Posted by Daithí O'Duibhne

10 Comments

  1. I agree. I was expecting great things from Aontu and even canvassed for them. I’m not sure about Peadar Tobin any more. Another thing that turned me away from them is the fact they display the Palestinian flag on social media when there’s a dispute in that part of the world.

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  2. The Real Fianna 27/08/2021 at 4:44 pm

    I would regard Aontú as just being another left-wing subordinate party to globalist agendas. The leader is just another liege man for globalism. Being against abortion is not enough, there has to be more political substance and depth. They are not real opposition to the servile puppets in the oireachtas and their submission to the orwellian dictates of the WHO/UN/EU.

    In fact, i would even regard Hungary now too as not real opposition to globalism either, the last year has shown a lot, hungary are fully implementing and promoting the clot-shot vexeen rollout. Boosting profits for big pharma, if a leader of a country truly cared for its populace it would not allow the WHO, THE UN OR THE EU to have a monopoly on what should be regarded as being healthy. The clot shots have killed thousands, maimed millions after only a few months, that is reason enough for sane people to stay away from them. Now european countries are allowing their most precious people (Their youth) to be injected with crap from big pharma. It just goes to show, if a political party in europe signs up to the EU, on what grounds should such a party be called a nationalist party anymore? If the EU can control the countries laws and penalize for non-compliance? Then where is the nationalism? If the WHO AND UN can control a european countries philosophy regarding the health system, then where is the nationalism? It is psuedo nationalism in reality. Hungary will find out what the EU really is soon enough, they are already being bullied about by them. And since big pharma companies have indemnity from their products, it will be the tax payers paying for the damage.

    Their former Aontú councillor that spoke about against the dangers of injections given to young people is the most intelligent member i have seen out of that party so far. When people like that speak out against the official narrative, the globalist owned and run big pharma establishment are out to condemn it immediately. Oh its misinformation they say, NO NO NO. What it really is the silencing of differing opinions, IT IS CENSORSHIP plain and simple. They say trust the science? Why should anyone trust the science that is being funded by globalists like Gates? Why are medical practioners who speak out against the official narrative being CENSORED?

    Booster profits, booster profits after 6 months ahaha. Gates funded big pharma company vexeens are effective for only 6 months then booster profits with the booster clot-shots and complete indemnity granted to big pharma. Oh dear.

    80% of Ireland have let big pharma inject their products into their arm. Its no wonder Ireland has a member of a party that bankrupted the nation as its leader. Ireland is more or less gone as an independent nation, the whole elected political hierarchy of the country are just serveants of globalism.

    Ireland is a real outlier to the complete subservience to the agendas of the EU/WHO/UN. It is the best in class after all. A low IQ electorate voting in politicans destroying the social fabric of society with failed policies and ever increasing debt. Taking in more refugees and cant even house its own citizens? Clown Republic, a little britain with a president that bows to the windsors, the same windsors whose son andrew was best buds with epstein and now being sued by one of epsteins victims, and the other son charles best pals with Saville. Then you have the suspicious death of diana. Old charles windsor promoting climate change agenda 2030 horseshit from davos and saying he caught covid-19 too right, a so-called virus never isolated with koch’s postulates? WHAT A JOKE!

    GAME OF THRONES SHIT. Cersei Lannister does not think much of the peasants. Its all a big club, and the peasants are not in it, fake meat for the peasants, the finest steak for the oligarchs. COMMUNISM, the few ruling the many. Saving the planet? HAHAHA. More like a restructuring of the kingdom to make it more comfortable for globalists, as if the population is too high, their rulership is threatened just by sheer numbers alone.

    Feminism = lower population. Less births

    Homosexuality = people not giving birth

    Funny how such agendas reduce population because the traditional family unit is being replaced.

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  3. Ahh has peadar lost his marbles? I voted for him last election. Not the next one now im afraid.

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  4. This ‘controversy’ is totally blown out of proportion. I’m vaccine-hesitant myself, but McCloskey’s comments were reckless and Aontú were right to distance themselves from her. Besides, from my experience, the boomer conspiracy theorists who would feel alienated by this action are not a worthwhile addition to any political movement.

    Accepting a modest number of refugees while Afghanistan is in such a tumultuous situation is an entirely reasonable proposal. Ireland’s issue is with economic migrants, not refugees (though there is often overlap). Aontú is the only party in the Dáil which favours restricting the number of migrants Ireland receives and has said repeatedly that we must have an open debate on the issue. Moreover, Aontú opposed the latest plan to give asylum seekers houses after only four months of being in the state.

    Here’s the thing: if you’re a socially conservative Nationalist who would like to see further restrictions on immigration, there is a place for you in Aontú. Certainly, there is some cringe in the party (thinking of Emmet Doyle’s enthusiasm for an LGBT rainbow road traffic crossing), but there are also a lot of like-minded individuals who understand the issues facing Ireland right now. The hatred I see for them by some on the radical right is unwarranted. It’s a party committed to realpolitik, not grandiose ideological visions.

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  5. Muriel Kinsella 28/08/2021 at 10:12 am

    I like the reasonable tone and content of your reply. Like you I’m vaccine hesitant, more for ideological reasons than medical ones. I will continue to resist the pressure to take a treatment about which I have reservations for a number of reasons, but I continue to have an open mind on the science behind it.
    As for the refugee issue, I would have no objection to Ireland receiving its share of those suffering in the current crises. As you say, it’s the never ending number of economic migrants that is the real threat to political, social and economic stability.

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  6. The Real Fianna 28/08/2021 at 3:31 pm

    Kyle said : I’m vaccine-hesitant myself, but McCloskey’s comments were reckless and Aontú were right to distance themselves from her.
    ___________________________________________________________________________________________
    No, not reckless at all, just a differing medical opinion from a professional. Aontú caved in to pathethic censorship and showed their true colours. No nationalist should ever vote for them.

    Kyle said : the boomer conspiracy theorists

    You sound like an state broadcaster prime time reporter or an antifa twitter account with a face nappy avatar. It seems you like censorship. OHHH THE FAR RIGHT, OHHHH THE Conspiracy theorists. Total ignorance from you.

    I would not regard you as a nationalist to be honest. You are globalist leaning left-wing the same as Aontu.

    Kyle said : Accepting a modest number of refugees while Afghanistan is in such a tumultuous situation is an entirely reasonable proposal.

    No its not reasonable. Ireland has no business bringing in more refugees when it has a housing shortage, and irish citizens should be first in line for houses, not non citizens.

    Austria said it was not taking in any afghans and that central asians countries should take them in instead.

    Did Aontú say that? No, because they are an open borders party. Like Sinn Fein. You are left-wing leaning globalist voter.

    Kyle said : Aontú is the only party in the Dáil which favours restricting the number of migrants Ireland receives and has said repeatedly that we must have an open debate on the issue.

    Laughable!

    Kyle said : Here’s the thing: if you’re a socially conservative Nationalist who would like to see further restrictions on immigration, there is a place for you in Aontú.

    ROFL.

    Muriel said : but I continue to have an open mind on the science behind it.

    What science? Big pharma is an arm of globalist agendas bringing in HUGE PROFITS and a stepping stone to digital surveillance apparatus.

    Big pharma freedom pass to enter restaurant? You guys, Kyle and Muriel are completely clueless. Its no wonder you think Aontu are nationalist.

    Aontu are open borders SINN FEIN.

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  7. Aontu support birthright citizenship. So do many in the anti abortion camp. Bedfellows with the woke lefties.

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  8. Peter Mc Ardle 28/08/2021 at 11:15 pm

    Aontu are not a nationalist party they are no different to the rest in the Dail, a Globalist party making homes in Ireland for every Tom dick and Mary from wherever but no new housing for our own homeless people the whole lot of them Globalists in the Dail sicken the guts out of me every one of them so anti Irish and pro anyone else from wherever at the expense of the Irish taxpayer, only the Irish freedom party and the likes are true nationalists. Thanks Peter.

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  9. Just another bunch of traitors, would never vote for these clowns!

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  10. Anna clair monaghan 05/09/2021 at 11:23 pm

    I left sinn fein because of their commie stance, i turned to aontu only to find they are the same except for the right to life, sooooo i looked around and wept, there is NO partyfor eire and her people and that is why i and many of my friends and family have deregistered from the voting game, NO PARTY or ‘INDEPENT’ ARE WORTHY OF A VOTE, NEVER AGAIN NO FOOL ME ONCE SHAME ON YOU, FOOL ME TWICE…. TEN TIMES SHAME ON ME, THATS ME AND MINE FINISHED WITH EVERY DAMNED PILITICAN AND PARTY ON THIS ISLAND.

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