#GE16 Campaign Digest – 8th Feb

Labour Trade Unionists
08 February 2016

What’s happening today?

Tánaiste and Labour Party Leader Joan Burton, will this morning launch ‘A strong economy for a decent society’, Labour’s plan for economic and social progress.

The Tánaiste will be joined by Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform, Brendan Howlin, and Minister for Communications, Alex White and Deputy Derek Nolan.

Joan Burton will visit Dublin Fingal today as part of the Leaders Tour.

Today’s messaging

1. Low and middle income workers will benefit most from Labour’s tax plan – today we are launching ‘Strong Economy for a Decent Society – Labour’s plan for economic and social progress.’ A key part of this is reducing USC, and abolishing it on all earnings up to €72,000. This means that low and middle income earners will benefit most from our tax plan.

2. For every €1 in tax cuts, Labour will invest €3 in the services families need – we are the only main party in this election proposing to invest in services on this scale. This means more investment in schools, hospitals, housing, and vital health services. We ant to improve living standards and make our communities better places to live, work, and raise a family.

3. Sinn Fein’s attitude to the administration of justice is ambivalent at best – Gerry Adams wants to get rid of the Special Criminal Court because of its judgement on his good republican friend Slab Murphy. Yet, he cannot answer what this means for dealing with gangland criminals. Sinn Fein

must remove the proposal to abolish the SCC from their manifesto.

Today’s front pages




The campaign trail – what’s in the news?


Irish Times


Leads with HSE plans to introduce restrictions on staff recruitment

Harry is on the canvass trail with Mary hanafin and other FF candidates in Dublin. Says voters have moved on since 2011 anger.

Varadkar rules out deal with FF.

USC should fo because emergency is over says Noonan in a pice by Mary Minihan, covering launch of FG tax plan. Says there should be a 5% clawback on incomes over €100k.

Sarah Bardon was in Nenagh for the local launch of Alan’s campaign. Colourful pic included.

Sinn Fein launched a health related ad attacking FG, but are on back-foot over their position on Special Criminal Court.

Staying with justice, FF pledges to strengthen Garda Siochana to 15,000.

Labour plans to use proceeds of AIB sale to fund green infrastructure is covered.




Leads with Sinn Fein’s rejection of need for Special Criminal Court. Adams seems to suggest that jurors could be sent to Witness Protection Programmes.

Buried on p8 is a story that says that according to Visa, consume spending is up by 7.5% in January compared to 2015.

Niall O’Connor was in Nenagh for Alan Kelly’s launch.

Labour Green Infrastructure plans are covered.

Kevin Doyle writes about FG tax plans

·         A 5pc ‘wealth tax’ on incomes over €100k when USC is abolished.

·         Lowering of PRSI threshold from €18,000 to €13,000.

·         Increased social welfare payments during the first nine months of unemployment.

·         Raising the minimum wage to €10.50.

·         Increasing the Homecarers’ credit to €1,650.


Cormac McQuinn is out ans about with Enda in Ballina.

John Downing assesses the first week of campaign through prism of ‘credibility’. Over, so far so dull is his conclusion.


In the Examiner Labour launch green economy plan with cycle to school scheme http://bit.ly/1Labkz1


Those earning in excess of €100,000 will be hit by a “wealth tax” of 5% under plans proposed by Finance Minister Michael Noonan. Labour claimed credit for Mr Noonan’s policy, insisting it was the first party to argue for such a wealth tax. http://bit.ly/1XcWVsC

Labour has confirmed it will wind down the Jobbridge programme and replace it with a new state trainee system.

Fianna Fail has said it would increase the number of Garsia to 15,000 if elected to office.

In the Daily Mail Fine Gael’s plan to axe the USC and increase welfare for the first nine months of unemployment are featured.

The Sun also features Fine Gael’s intentions to abolish the USC.

Renua want to get new people in politics by enforcing a ‘two terms and you’re out’ policy.

In the Daily Star Lucinda Creighton is quoted as saying Renua will drive a very hard bargain in return for their support of a government.

The Daily Mirror reports low paid will have their income tax hiked, Fine Gael revealed in a bombshell announcement yesterday. But the party tried to soften the blow by pledging to abolish the USC and increase some benefits over the next five years.

Labour will ring-fence €1bn to replace the public bus fleet, set up a new bike to school scheme and retrofit almost 250,000 homes to drive down energy costs.

Labour on Air

Tánaiste Joan Burton will be on Newstalk Breakfast at 9am.

Senator Susan O’Keeffe will be on Campaign Daily on RTE 1 at 12.

Minister Brendan Howlin will be on Claire Byrne Live on RTE at 10.30.

Opposition Watch

Right2Change will unveiling their candidates.

Sinn Fein will spell out how they plan to abolish the property tax.

Fine Gael will outline their plans to improve public services.



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