Eamon And The “Ultra Left”

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On foot of the Government’s attempt to bring in further public sector paycuts, Independent TD Clare Daly told Tánaiste and Labour leader Eamon Gilmore to join Fine Gael during Leaders’ Questions in the Dáil earlier, prompting him to criticise Ireland’s “ultra left”.

Clare Daly said:

“Tánaiste, my question to you, is since you don’t believe in struggle and solidarity, is it not time that you did the honourable thing, follow the path of the tradition that you are now full and firmly in and follow, like Michael O’Leary before you, go off and join Fine Gael and bring Minister Howlin with you?”

Eamon Gilmore responded:

“When you have problems of this scale, you can either rant and chant about them, as you do. Or you can try and fix them. And that’s what the Labour Party is, that’s what the Labour Party, that’s what the Labour Party is in Government to do and that is what we are doing.”

“You can go through constituency by constituency and you know what, where will you find the ultra left, you’ll find the ultra left opposing every single proposal, to industrial development, for the location of industry. I’ve an example of it in my own constituency, where a proposal by a company, to find additional employment is being actively opposed by you, by your colleagues on your benches. So, you know, you can’t have it both ways, you can’t rant and rave and shout slogans about youth unemployment and then oppose every single measure that’s being taken, whether it’s correcting the public finances or whether it is advocating a particular industry in a particular area to which it is trying to solve it. The difference, you and I, Deputy Daly, you and I, you and I, Deputy Daly, you and I, Deputy Daly, share the concern about the level of youth unemployment and the problems of working people in this country. But the difference between you and I, Deputy Daly, is you shout slogans at it, and I work in Government to try and solve it.”

Via Merrion Street