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Social Welfare Cuts should be put before newly elected Dáil – Ó Snodaigh

9 December, 2010 - by Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD

Sinn Féin Social Protection Spokesperson Aengus Ó Snodaigh today attempted to move an amendment to the Social Welfare Bill which would ensure all the cuts included in the Bill would have to be re-approved by the Dáil after a general election.

Deputy Ó Snodaigh had called on all parties to support his amendment in the interest of democracy but it was ruled out of order by the Ceann Comhairle and the Bill subsequently passed despite opposition.

Speaking today he said:

“This budget, and the savage cuts included in it, has been brought forward by a Government without the support of the people. It is the final insult from a Government that has brought the state to its knees.

“However both Labour and Fine Gael have signed up to the consensus for cuts and the Labour Party leader, while giving out about the cuts, has insisted that he will not reverse them if in Government after the election.

“I had therefore put forward an amendment to the Social Welfare Bill that, if allowed and adopted, would have guaranteed that cuts would cease on the 14th day of the new Dáil unless a new resolution is passed.

“This would have made the cuts an election issue and every party would have to be clear about what they would do in Government when setting out their stall.

“In the interest of democracy I am called on the government to re-table my amendment and on all parties to support it. Unfortuntately despite the fact that they have long outstayed their mandate the government forced through the Bill.” ENDS

Note to editor:

Deputy Ó Snodiagh’s amendment is below. It was ruled out of order by the Ceann Comhairle because only the government can table amendments involving a potential charge on the Exchequer.

Section 1
In page 3 between lines 18 and 19 insert the following new subsection:
“(4) Each of the following sections namely sections 3, 4, 5, 7, 8 and 9 cease to be in operation on and from the 14th day of the 31st Dáil unless a resolution is passed by the Dáil resolving that the sections should continue in operation.”

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