Sinn Féin’s Matt Carthy has said that comments by former advisor to the head of the European Commission, Phillippe Legrain, point to the failure of outgoing establishment MEPs to stand up for Irish interests in Europe.
Speaking from the campaign trail in Kildare today the Midlands Northwest candidate said:
“Phillippe Legrain’s observations that Ireland was ‘bullied’ by its European partners and of how the Irish government ‘could have stood up for themselves’ on the bank guarantee point to the abstract failure of the outgoing establishment MEPs to stand up for Ireland’s interests in Europe.
“Fianna Fáil, Fine Gael and Labour have failed to stand up for Irish interests in Europe. As a result Ireland got a raw deal – uniquely Irish citizens were forced by the EU to take on the bad debts of the banks.The MEPs from these parties did not see it as their role to stand up for Ireland when clearly the Irish people were being walked all over by the EU and the ECB.
“Mr Legrain is right when he says that Ireland ‘needs to play hardball now’ on legacy bank debts.
“I want to work to secure a deal on legacy banking debt and the retrospective recapitalisation of the Irish Banks. I want to set down a marker about how Ireland is treated. I want to ensure that the concerns of the people of the Midlands North West constituency are heard in the European Parliament and I want to make our EU colleagues understand that Ireland will never again allow itself be walked on as has been done over the last five years.
“Ireland needs MEPs who are not afraid to be outspoken and to stand up for Irish interests. A strong team of Sinn Féin MEPs will stand up for Ireland.”