Unaffordable housing poisons youth view of Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil – The Irish Times

After a century of relative stasis, Irish politics is realigning and the chief accelerant is housing.

The State’s longstanding Fine Gael-Fianna Fáil duopoly received a combined vote of just 43 per cent at the last general election, a record low. Both were outpolled by Sinn Féin who appealed to voters seemingly left behind by a booming economy and aggravated by soaring rents.

Once the combined vote of the two main parties in a two-party system falls below a certain threshold, the system ruptures. The decision to bury the Civil War hatchet and enter government together will only hasten the process.

A decade of rising house prices and chronic undersupply has bored a hole in Irish politics, alienating mainstream parties from an increasingly vociferous younger demographic who feel permanently locked out of the market.

Despite successive pledges to build more houses and make them more affordable, successive Irish governments have succeeded

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