Sinn Féin MPs will not abandon their democratic mandate - Mary Lou McDonald TD
Speaking in response to the demand from An Taoiseach that Sinn Féin MP’s resign their seats, Sinn Féin President Mary Lou McDonald has said:
“Sinn Féin is the largest nationalist party in the North and we have no intention of standing aside and abandoning our mandate.
“The reality is that the people of 'those constituencies' have already spoken and they chose abstentionist Sinn Féin MPs.
"The Taoiseach's problem is that he doesn't like the democratic choice of the people of 'those constituencies' and now makes the ludicrous proposition that there should be another election without Sinn Féin's participation, taking the democratic choice away from the people. He needs to catch himself on.
“If the Taoiseach and Fine Gael think Irish politicians should take seats in the British Parliament, they should seek a mandate for that, stand candidates in the Northern elections, and stop hurling from the ditch.
“Fine Gael, and Fianna Fáil for that matter, should put to the people their willingness to take seats in Westminster and to swearing an oath to a foreign power and let the people decide.
“Sinn Féin representatives have been very active in advancing the rights and interests of people particularly with regard to Brexit.
“It falls to the government in Dublin to protect the interests of Ireland, North and South and to uphold our agreements. The Taoiseach is aware of this and needs to live up to his responsibilities.
“It is ironic that, in the coming weeks Leo Varadkar will celebrate An Vótáil 100, the election of Constance Markievicz and the establishment of the first Dáil. At that time the people elected MPs on an abstentionist platform.
“Leo Varadkar is also the Taoiseach who famously said the Nationalist people in the North will never again be left behind yet he is now advocating that we reject their democratic wishes.”