Juvenile spat between FF and FG devoid of policy differences

29 June 2018

Labour Party Leader Brendan Howlin has criticised the juvenile spat that has broken out between the Taoiseach and Fianna Fáil as devoid of policy differences with both agreed on the limited package for next year’s budget.

Deputy Howlin said:

“The last two weeks has seen Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael bend over backwards with each other to agree economic policy, with both committing to the Rainy Day Fund and the so called ‘fiscal stance’ adopted by the Minister for Finance in the Summer Economic Statement.

“The hot weather has clearly got to the Taoiseach and Michéal Martin with a war of words erupting over very little. Both want to pass the next Budget the parameters of which they have already agreed. What’s left now is to divide up where the limited additional resources will go.

“Labour wants a more ambitious package in the Budget to address the deficits in health, education and housing. Fianna Fail has chosen a different position and are prepared to back Fine Gael on it.

“At an EU Council dominated by the migration crisis and the lack of progress on Brexit, the Taoiseach found time to stir the pot with Fianna Fáil.

“The most noticeable element of the budding row is the total lack of policy differences.

“It’s clear the Taoiseach and Fine Gael want an election now, have ramped up preparations and are testing slogans but are afraid to actually call it.

“A cosy relationship has now developed over the last two and half years, and both sides are afraid to end it. It’s time both were called out on the lack of real choice they are giving the Irish people.”

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