Meanwhile, In The Dáil


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During Irish Water questioning.

UPDATE: RTÉ News is reporting that the Ceann Comhairle will not come into the Dáil chamber until Mary Lou McDonald leaves the house.



Transcript of what was said before it all kicked off…

Mary Lou McDonald: “Let me return to , if I might the two specific questions that I’ve put to you, as Tánaiste, but also as Minister for Social Protection, I have asked you specifically to give an assurance to the Dáil, that you will not allow for unpaid bills to be deducted from people’s wages, people’s pensions, or people’s social welfare. That’s question number one, if you would answer. Question number two was, that you would not allow attachment orders to be used by Irish Water for unpaid bills. And I know Tánaiste that the House is sitting on Friday, I understand that there will be a vote on Friday, I wonder to myself and there is some speculation that there might be emergency legislation presented on Friday, perhaps to allow for these very things.”

Ceann Comhairle Sean Barrett: “Thank you.”

McDonald: “So put people’s minds at rest and make it clear today that you will not allow for deductions of unpaid bills from wages, from pensions and from social welfare and, address also please if you would, that the issue of attachment orders and make it clear that you will not allow for the use of such orders by Irish Water in respect of unpaid bills.”

Barrett: “Thank you, deputy. Sh, sh, sh.”

Joan Burton: “Well, first of all, just let me say, I’ve been listening very, very carefully to what people are saying…”

Barrett: “Sorry, sorry, sorry…”

Burton: “And deputy, what people have said to me, up and down the country, and I’ve had the opportunity to be in quite a number of different parts of the country, in recent weeks. And, listening to people, which I do, I’m not sure if you always do, but I certainly listen to people. Yesterday, listening to the [Maira Cahill] debate, it seemed like there’s a very large tin ear on the part of the many of the people that your party, in relation to very serious concerns. But listening to people, as I go around the country, what people say to me and I can only offer you my experience. And I…sorry…can I answer…you asked me about listening, can I tell you about listening? Can I answer the deputy, can I answer the deputy’s questions…what people say to me is they want clean, reliable water. In Roscommon they tell me, they don’t want to have to boil their water, as they’ve been doing for 12 years…

Barrett: “Thank you, thank you.”

Burton: In Dublin, restaurants and hotels tell me to continue the tourism and the hospitality trade in Dublin, Dublin needs a reliable supply of water, it doesn’t have it. Now in relation to next week…”

Barrett: “Would you please, we’re over time..”

Burton: “…In respect of next week, I have told you already that Minister Alan Kelly is finalising the package of proposals in relation to Irish Water and when he unveils the package, there’s been no agreement finalised in relation to the package, except, as I think I told you some weeks ago, I am very, very confident that the package will be one which will address the issue of single-person households and households where there are two or more people and that the charges will be modest and extremely affordable, particularly in the context of a budget where the middle-income families you’re talking about, the low-income families, the Budget has been built…I have told you…”

Barrett: “Sorry, thank you. Deputy Maureen O’Sullivan, deputy Maureen O’Sullivan. Thank you.”

All talk over each other.

McDonald: “Ceann comhairle…”

Barrett: “Sorry, would you resume your seat? Resume your seat? Well, then leave the house. Leave the house.”

McDonald: “I will not leave the house.”

Barrett: “Well then…”

McDonald: “My questions were put very clearly, in very clear… you did not answer..”

All talk over each other.

Barrett: “Deputy, I’m asking you for the final time, to leave the House, I’m asking you to leave the House. Ok, I’m putting the question, I’m naming Deputy McDonald, and I move that she be suspended from the service of the Dáil. Is that agreed?”




Mary Lou McDonald this evening following her Dáil sit in.

(Sam Boal/Photocall Ireland)

72 thoughts on “Meanwhile, In The Dáil

  1. Starina

    I really feel like I’m missing something — why is she suspended?

    *rubs hands in glee at pandemonium in the Dail*

    1. Dan

      I’m not a Shinner but Joan Burton should have answered the questions. It really annoys me when politicians ignore questions and spin a load of $hit€.

  2. Jordofthejungle

    Mary Lou is so loud, vocal and ubiquitous when it comes to her crusade against Irish Water but so meek, quiet and “otherwise engaged” when it comes to Mairia Cahill.

    Hats off Mary Lou – perfect theatrics to distract from the one issue that renders you uncharacteristically mute.

    1. andyourpointiswhatexactly

      She made sh*t out of Chris O’Donoghue on Newstalk recently when he “interviewed” her about the IRA’s handling of rapists up north. He couldn’t get a word in edgeways. He’s a rubbish interviewer and didn’t pick her up on some outrageous comments she was making (notably about the fact that we only set up the sex offenders register in 2001 down south, as if that had anything to do with the IRA’s rough justice up north).

      1. mauriac

        there’s no cover up – sinnfein/IRA just moved rapists and paedophiles to the south and didn’t tell anyone – big difference .

      2. Medium Sized C

        She dodged questions at a rate that would put Joan Burton to shame.

        Talking over the interviewer isn’t winning.
        Its hiding.

        1. andyourpointiswhatexactly

          It’s not winning, I know, but it was a hugely effective tactic. I was shouting at the radio “WHY ISN’T IVAN INTERVIEWING HER FFS?” but I think they take every second go or something.

      3. Domestos

        He’s a fifth year MUN student essentially. I’m tired of his “Gerry, were you in the IRA?” theatrics.

    2. ollie

      maria cahill story is 2 years old. what about the victims of sex abuse south of the border? 4% of abusers belonged to religious orders, who’s protecting the remaining 96%….. and why?

  3. martco

    …I’d love to see Mary Lou at the controls but probably never will, she’s a boss

    fupp you Joan, answer the questions or get your coat

  4. Christopher

    I’m no fan of Mary Lou McDonald but just when I thought Joan Burton could sink no lower in my estimations- is she ever going to answer a question? Vile woman and I cannot wait to see Labour decimated in the next election. It will be more sweeter than the FF destruction of last time since there is a good chance Labour are going to be returned with 5 TDs top.

    1. Sheila

      Yes, I would be to. Still not a fan of hers. Or any TD for that matter.

      I’m surprised at Joan Burton for using the question to turn the Maira Cahill issue back at Mary Lou. Woman of the year my arse.

      That said, Mary Lou would definitely use the same tactic I’m sure.

      1. Nessy

        I agree. Mary Lou asked a simple question and “Woman of the Year” Burton couldn’t answer. Typical of FG/LB turning things back around and mentioning Maria Cahill. They topic was about Irish Water. Maria, as a victim of abuse should never have been brought into the conversation

      2. Wookie

        they’re all a bunch of clowns, playing their politician games in the dail, shouting each other down and giving ‘digs’ at each other….sigh…and what’s worse? we vote these idiots in…

  5. ReproBertie

    Was it for this?

    It could have been any question by any opposition TD and it could be any government going back to Bertie’s early days (and probably before). The format is always the same. A question is asked, the Ceann Comhairle sets his stopwatch, the government TD waffles while ignoring the question, the Ceann Comhairle calls time, the questioner objects, the Ceann Comhairle has a little ego fit and someone storms off.

    Then we wonder why voter turnout is low.

    A pox on all their houses.

  6. al

    Sean Barrett is so childish. if he wasnt such a baby there might be more order in the dail. he is usually at the centre of all the rubbish that goes on in there

  7. Mary Mary

    For all the moaning about schoolteachers in the Dáil, this is where they really could play a part. Seán Barrett is out of his depth.

  8. aoh

    My problem with Sean Barrett is that, come the next election, he automatically gets elected. Anyone know of a way to get rid of him (from the Dail!)

  9. realPolithicks

    The dail is a f**king joke. Mary Lou McDonald is an elected TD and is entitled to ask legitimate questions and expect an answer.

  10. Spaghetti Hoop

    Unless Mary Lou did a double two-fingered salute or something I can’t see from the above transcript what she did.

  11. dhaughton99

    Since the sun is back out in Dublin, We are all going to the Dail in support of Mary Lou. Aren’t we?

    Oh look a rainbow.

  12. aretheymyfeet

    I cannot stand SF who I believe would be very dangerous if given the power of the State in government but anyone can see that Burton was spinning a line of BS there. She was simply not answering what I see as a perfectly legitimate question from Mary Lou (who herself has done a line in obfuscation and BS lately on the Maira Cahill story). We have some shower of gobs**tes in our dail….

  13. Mary Mary

    I’ve carefully analysed the transcript of Joan’s answer and found the following:

    Irrelevant waffle about listening to people, followed by a dig at Mary Lou.
    Dig at Sinn Féin, more irrelevant waffle about listening.
    Unconnected straw man argument about clean water.
    Half-hearted attempt at answering question but nothing directly addressed.
    The vaguest of reassurances but again, no direct response to question asked.

    1. bisted

      …just watched RTE1 TV report… heavily edited to show Burton giving reasonable reply then a beligerant McDonald being asked to leave the Chamber by Barrett. WTF. No resemblance to blow by blow account on twitter all afternoon.

  14. Dhaughton99

    That’s 2 apologises that the shinners owe the Independent. One for the New York ‘joke’ the rag won’t leave alone and now this ‘disgraceful political stunt’.

  15. JunkFace

    The one thing you don’t miss when you get away from Ireland for a while is sh1tty Irish Politics. Every day in the Dail they’re having a go at each other like children. Solving no problems, and billing the taxpayer for their useless days work. Uuuuggghhhh!

    Bunch of c*nts!

      1. Kieran NYC

        At least they can make a speech/ask/answer a question without reading verbatim from a bit of paper.

        Quality of debate in the Dail is atrocious compared to the HoC.

  16. Cynic

    Drama Lama pose from Mary Lou because the Troika aren’t yet in town to answer the question? Fair enough. It’s politics after all.

  17. Soundings

    “Captain of the House” Who’s that, what do they get paid and are they armed with a wooden spoon?

  18. Truth in the News

    The actual diversion was the previous days debate which backfired
    yesterday and no amount of hysteria about SF or Indepenents will
    save them….they are facing wipe out, over all the austerity taxes
    inflicted by them and FF on the people.
    What it amounts to is treason, as the Irish State has been subverted as
    as tax vechicle to save international banks and bondholders

    1. Frilly Keane

      “What it amounts to is treason, as the Irish State has been subverted as a tax vehicle to save international banks and bondholders”

      Should be framed
      Laminated and distributed as prayer cards
      Printed on tea towels
      Added to your email signature
      Form a lyric and verse into the National Anthem
      Be included in that 2016 promo
      Turned into a rebel song

      Because it sums up Ireland better than anything yet

      Fair dues TITN

  19. Mourinho

    Did EVERYONE miss this?

    “And I know Tánaiste that the House is sitting on Friday, I understand that there will be a vote on Friday, I wonder to myself and there is some speculation that there might be emergency legislation presented on Friday, perhaps to allow for these very things.”

    They planned on taking your water bill from your wage packet.
    No civil disobedience allowed.

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