Budget 2017 straight out of the Fianna Fáil playbook – Adams
Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams TD, speaking during Statements on the Budget in the Dáil this afternoon, has said that Budget 2017 is a package straight out of the Fianna Fáil playbook, is about maintaining the status-quo and will not contribute to a recovery where no community or citizen is left behind.
Teachta Adams said:
“Budget 2017 is a budget straight out of the Fianna Fáil playbook; a little bit for everyone in the audience - some spending here, tax cuts there and a subsidy for property speculators and developers.
“Remember Micheál Martin’s claim that the election, and I quote, ‘represented an overwhelming rejection of the Fine Gael-Labour government, its policies and its hyper political behaviour.’ Fianna Fáil then U-turned and put Enda Kenny back into power, as did the Independent Alliance. It wasn’t the only U-turn.
“In the past few months, Fianna Fáil have U-turned on stated policy positions in respect of bin charge hikes, on the national monument in Moore Street, on opposing banded-hours contracts, on introducing rent certainty and on NAMA; and of course on the issue of water charges.
“In its general election manifesto, they pledged to scrap Irish Water and water charges. It then U-turned on that position as part of its deal to keep Fine Gael in government and opted for an expert Commission on water services and a one-year suspension of charges.
“When Sinn Féin provided an opportunity to vote for the scrapping of water charges with a motion in the Dáil, what did Fianna Fáil do? Another U-turn by voting with their government partners against the Sinn Féin motion.
“It’s a little wonder that the message from the Fianna Fáil frontbench is so confused. They’re obviously dizzy from U-turning.
“It’s all about maintaining the status quo - the so-called centre - and sustaining themselves while trying to contain the righteous anger of increasing numbers of people at the playacting of the conservative parties.
“Of course, there were other choices available, as there have been over the last decade. Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil know that. Budget 2017 could have been about starting to build an Ireland for living, not merely for getting by.
“Sinn Féin’s alternative budget was economically prudent and grounded in the Republican ideals of equality and fairness. Our proposals would have reduced the high cost of living facing families and citizens.
“For hundreds of thousands of citizens, life is dominated by worries over money, keeping a roof over their head, getting a roof over their heads, paying hospital bills or back to school costs.
“The high cost of living, combined with inadequate underfunded public services, means that many families are working long hours and still can’t make ends meet.
“That’s what Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil mean when they talk about recovery.
“Sinn Féin on the other hand wants to build a recovery where no community is left behind and no citizen is left behind. Yesterday’s budget didn’t do that.”