Social Democratic Party (Caldia)

Social Democratic Party
LeaderStiofán Mac Suibhne
ChairpersonMorgan Dougharty
Founded1912
HeadquartersSíocháin Building
Spálgleann, Caldia
Youth wingYoung Social Democrats
Membership (2015)65,612
IdeologySocial democracy
Democratic socialism
Political positionCentre-left
Euclean Parliament groupSocialist Alternative for Euclea
Colours     Red
Seanad Glítteann
23 / 60
Comhthionól Náisiúnta
218 / 399
Euclean Parliament
9 / 20

The Social Democratic Party (Ghaillish: Páirtí Sóisialta Daonlathach), popularly known as the Social Democrats, is a centre-left political party in Caldia. The party is officially committed to social-democratic ideals. Its slogan since the 1930s has been "everyone shall take part", and the party traditionally seeks a strong welfare state, funded through taxes and duties. The Social Democrats actively campaign for the reintroduction of the progressive tax, which was replaced with a flat tax under Taoiseach Patricia Flowers. Likewise, the party also supports expanding the Roghapoiblí (public option) and establishing a universal healthcare system. Most recently, the Social Democrats pursued a coalition with the Greens, resulting in the Red-Green coalition from 1997-2002. In preparation for the Caldish general election, 2017, the two parties entered into a formal electoral alliance and campaigned together, but saw defeat. The party's historical coalition partner, the Leftist Party, merged with the Industrial Labour Party into the Labour Party in 1999.

It was originally founded in 1912 by the leaders of the Confederation of Ghaillish Unions as the group's political wing. Historically, the party boasts strong ties to organised labour and the nation's unions. The Social Democrats overtook the Caldia Democrats after the rise of the Liberty Party in 1937. The party's first Taoiseach Seamus Flemming took power in 1952. Under Taoiseach Mary O'Neil, the Social Democrats established an expansive welfare state. The reforms were very costly and were targeted by Taoiseach Flowers, who moved to totally abolish the system. Taoiseach Morgan Leneghan, who was elected after Flowers, rebuilt the Caldish welfare state to be smaller and more efficient. She also launched a massive overhaul of the education system, raising it to global prominence.

Under Taoiseach Leneghan the party began to pursue Third Way policies in order to offer what Leneghan called a "humane alternative" to the neoliberalism of the Flowers Era. As a result, the party saw massive internal discontent and eventually the more left-wing faction of the party split off to form the Industrial Labour Party. The Social Democrats suffered a landslide defeat in the 2002 Comhthionól election and Leneghan was taken out in a leadership coup. Since then, the party has begun to abandon its neoliberal platform and moved farther left. It has not formed a government since 2002 and faced its fourth consecutive defeat in the 2017 general election. The party saw a rough campaign under Darragh Ballíck, who began feuding with the unions over his electoral alliance with the Greens.

As of 2019 it is the largest party in the Comhthionól Náisiúnta with 218 TCs. The current leader and taoiseach is Stiofán Mac Suibhne, who has held the post since June of 2017. The party also has 23 seanadóirí and 9 MEPs. The Social Democrats are a member of the Socialist Alternative for Euclea group in the Euclean Parliament.

History

Origins and early years

Administrations

Macaulay

Ní Néill

Mac Ailín

Ó Muilleoir

Nic Uilliamn

Ó Faoláin

Mac Suibhne

21st century

Leaders

Stiofán Mac Suibhne, the current party leader

Social Democratic Taoiseachs

  • Seamus Macaulay (June 1952 - June 1957)
  • Máire Ní Néill(June 1962 - May 1967)
  • Rory Mac Ailín (May 1867 - March 1969)
  • Mícheál Ó Muilleoir (June 1977 - June 1982)
  • Niamh Nic Uilliam (June 1992 - March 2002)
  • Séamus Ó Faoláin (March 2002 - June 2002)
  • Stiofán Mac Suibhne (February 2019 - Present)