Re-run of Lisbon simply not an option - McDonald
Responding to Minister of State for Europe Dick Roche's comments that the government may re-run the Lisbon Treaty referendum Sinn Féin Dublin MEP Mary Lou McDonald described the statement as "another example of a government without a plan."
Speaking from Leinster House the Dublin MEP said:
"Minister Roche's comments are yet another example of a government without a plan to tackle the political reality that the Lisbon Treaty is finished. There is no political crisis as Minister Roche has suggested. There is simply a political task to be dealt with. The Irish people, like the French and Dutch before them, have rejected this Treaty. A new deal now needs to be negotiated.
"But rather than step up to the job at hand the Irish government has repeatedly tried to connive and convince a re-running the Lisbon Treaty. Minister Roche's comments are just the latest in a string of silly season kite-flying exercises.
"Minister Roche states his comments are personal. What nonsense! He also states that the Irish cannot simply sit on our hands and keep saying no. The only people who have sat on their hands since June 12th is the Irish government and those who supported them in their Yes to Lisbon campaign.
"Immediately following the success of the No campaign Sinn Féin sought a meeting with the Taoiseach and submitted to the Irish government a detailed series of recommended changes to the Treaty that reflected the concerns articulated by the people during the campaign.
"We have since published this document entitled 'A Better Deal for Ireland and the EU' which addresses issues such as the loss of a permanent Commissioner, declining democracy within the EU, the strengthening of key vetoes, the removal of all self amending clauses, public services and workers rights and a number of aspects of common foreign and defence policies.
"Sinn Féin is the only political party to have produced such a document. The others have chosen instead to spend the passing months finger pointing and indulging themselves in a blame game.
"These are all practical and deliverable demands. Sinn Féin's Better Deal document offers the Irish government a very real way to tackle the political debate it must have with the EU Commission. We would welcome the opportunity to discuss our solid proposals with the Taoiseach in advance of October's summit.
"It is time the Irish government stopped trying to circumvent the Irish people and instead knuckled down to the job at hand. The Lisbon Treaty is finished and rerunning the proposition for a second time is simply not an option." ENDS