Girish Mahajan (Editor)

The Week in Politics

Updated on
Share on FacebookTweet on TwitterShare on LinkedInShare on Reddit
Country of origin  Ireland
Camera setup  Multi-camera
Production company(s)  RTÉ
Presented by  Sean O'Rourke
Cast  Sean O'Rourke
Original language(s)  English
Running time  60 mins
First episode date  1996
Network  RTÉ One
Genres  News, Current affairs
The Week in Politics httpspbstwimgcomprofileimages3788000005631

Location(s)  Studio 3, RTÉ Television Centre, Donnybrook, Dublin 4, Ireland
Similar  Oireachtas Report, RTÉ News: One O'Clock, RTÉ News: Nine O'Clock, Prime Time, RTÉ News: Six One

The Week in Politics is an Irish news and current affairs programme broadcast on RTÉ One and RTÉ News Now. It is presented by Sean O'Rourke, occasionally by David McCullagh or Bryan Dobson. In its original format in 1996 it was hosted by Geraldine Harney and Seán Duignan.


The programme reflects on the political week, with interviews and discussions. The majority of guests are politicians who are Teachta Dálaí or Irish Senators. The programme is broadcast live at noon on Sunday and is repeated throughout the day on RTÉ News Now and its traditional late night slot on RTÉ One. The programme moved from its late night slot to midday in January 2013.

The programme also has reports from RTÉ News and Current Affairs reporters.

Child abuse compensation

Pat Carey, the Irish Government's Chief Whip, used the show to call for changes to the compensation scheme for victims of child abuse following the revelations contained within the Commission to Inquire into Child Abuse.

Seanad controversy

Fine Gael by-election candidate, George Lee caused controversy in May 2009 when he called for the abolition of Seanad Éireann on The Week in Politics after hearing that the senators only sat for forty days and cancelled one session to pursue a round of golf. Lee is a former employee of RTÉ, having served as their chief economics editor for years before announcing his decision to seek election. The Irish Independent suggested Lee displayed "a lack of basic political knowledge" as Dáil Éireann sits for just one extra day. Lee called the controversial golf session "an absolute outrage" on the show and, when prompted further on his views, said: "I really couldn't be bothered if they [the senators] were shut down, it's a disgrace". Members of his own party were said to be "furious" at Lee's remarks, with one unnamed senator saying it was an "attack... born out of ignorance... does he want to close down the Dáil, too?". Maurice Cummins described the Seanad as the "whipping boy" of Irish politics and Frances Fitzgerald asked Lee to read over the party's policy on the matter.

Hanafin by-election comments

In February 2010, Minister for Social and Family Affairs Mary Hanafin used the programme to indicate the by-election in Dublin South and the by-election in Donegal South-West to replace outgoing George Lee and Pat the Cope Gallagher would take place alongside the election for Mayor of Dublin and a referendum.

Bertie Ahern's kitchen cupboardgate

When former Taoiseach Bertie Ahern hid in a kitchen cupboard for a television advertisement in 2010, opposition parties used the show to describe the skit as "terrible" for the country.

Pat Rabbitte's admission

In 2012, host Sean O'Rourke discussed broken promises with Labour Party Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources Pat Rabbitte. During the discussion, with the minister being asked if he had broken any campaign promises, Rabbitte said, "Isn't that what you tend to do during an election?"


The Week in Politics Wikipedia