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Micheál Martin already has a solution to Lisbon - The mandate the electorate gave government on June 12th

17 November, 2008

Responding this afternoon to Foreign Affairs Minister Micheál Martin’s comments on how he intends to finally deal with the Lisbon Treaty Sinn Féin’s Lisbon Campaign Director and North West EU candidate Cllr. Pádraig Mac Lochlainn said Minister Martin does not need to wait until the December’s Council of Ministers meeting to outline the elements of a solution to Lisbon noting, “the Irish people gave the Minister his solution on June 12th.”


The Donegal Cllr. said:


“Despite the peoples rejection of Lisbon over five months ago the government has done nothing to move the issue on. Brian Cowen has shown no political leadership. He has shown no ability to negotiate with our European partners on the issues why the electorate rejected Lisbon.


“Despite how Minister Martin attempts to spin the current political realities surrounding Lisbon, the facts are as they are. Ireland’s place is firmly in Europe. We are not on the fringes of EU Institutions. Ireland remains integrated within the European economy.


“The government has chosen to turn its back on the needs and concerns of the Irish electorate in an effort to ensure an easy life with its European peers. This approach has been reckless and is the reason why some European leaders may be questioning Ireland’s relationship with Europe.


“Brian Cowen was given a solution to tackling Lisbon on June 12th. The people gave his government a clear mandate upon which to get a better deal. It is not too late.


“The government needs to go to December’s summit with the firm intent of negotiating a better deal that includes a social progress clause for workers, strengthening of key vetoes on public services, taxation and international trade, the removal of all self amending clauses including Article 48, secure vetoes on all aspects of common foreign and defence policies, and the retention of Ireland’s permanent Commissioner. Obtaining declarations on a small number of issues that the government alone perceives as central to the No vote will not be enough.


Responding to today Irish Times/MRBI poll Mr. Mac Lochlainn said:


“The No vote is strong which illustrates that the people’s reasons for rejecting the Lisbon Treaty remain the same. The question posed to those polled was limited and reflects the government’s own self serving interpretation as to why the Treaty was rejected. The protection of workers rights and public services are examples of just two areas that remain major issues of concern to workers across the state and indeed throughout Europe and cannot be ignored.” ENDS

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