Tag Archives: Fine Gael

This morning.

Middle pic from left: Taoiseach Leo Varadkar, Minister for Business and Enterprise Heather Humphreys, Minister for Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform Paschal Donohoe speaking to the media in Dublin on day two of campaigning for the general election 2020.

Fine Gael in 200,000 jobs pledge at economic plan launch (RTÉ)

Sam Boal/Rollingnews


This morning.

Fianna Fáil’s Finance Spokesperson Michael McGrath and Brexit Spokesperson Lisa Chambers at the party’s election headquarters for a press briefing on the economy and Brexit on day two of the general election 2020.

Fianna Fail pledges to ‘do a better job’ with public finances (Belfast Telegraph)

Leah Farrell/RollingNews

A letter the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection Regina Doherty sent to her constituents earlier this month

The Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection Regina Doherty recently wrote a letter to her constituents in which she stated:

I ensured that tips in our hospitality sector are paid to employees and not withheld.”

However, last June…

The Irish Times reported:

A Bill to prevent employers deducting or withholding tips from employees has been passed by the Seanad despite Government opposition.

Senators voted by 25 to 14 on an amendment to the Sinn Féin National Minimum Wage (Protection of Employee Tips) Bill and then passed the Bill without a vote.

Sinn Féin Senator Paul Gavan, who introduced the legislation, rejected as “completely wrong” claims by Minister for Employment Affairs Regina Doherty that the legislation would result in tips being taxed under the PAYE system and would have knock-on negative effects on workers’ entitlements to social welfare supports.

…Independent Senator Michael McDowell sharply criticised Ms Doherty for putting a “money message” on the legislation, required for Bills that will have an impact on the exchequer.

He said it was an “absolutely threadbare and totally unacceptable suggestion” that it involves appropriating the public revenue.

Mr McDowell said that “in a society transforming itself to a cashless society it is wholly wrong that that entirely positive development is used as a licence to plunder workers’ pockets”.

There you go now.


Last Monday, before the election date was called, Ms Doherty was interviewed by Seán O’Rourke on RTÉ’s Today with Seán O’Rourke, during which she told Mr O’Rourke:

“Nobody ever reads manifestos during the election. Seán, you know that.”

Listen back to the interview in full here

Pic: One Galway


Just now.

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar “drops” a Fine Gael general election video – although he’s the only Fine Gael party member mentioned in it.

It also confirms that the party’s slogan is “A Future To Look Forward To”.


Earlier: “A Future To Look Forward To”

Helen McEntee and Leo Varadkar on RTÉ in May 2019

Minutes ago…

Minister of State for European Affairs and Fine Gael TD Helen McEntee was interviewed on RTÉ Radio One’s Today with Seán O’Rourke.

Mr O’Rourke asked Ms McEntee if it’s correct that Fine Gael’s election slogan is “A Future To Look Forward To”.

The minister largely repeated what Taoiseach Leo Varadkar told RTÉ’s This Week on Sunday.

His main points were that it took seven years for Fine Gael to fix the economy; as a consequence of that, the party could only invest in public infrastructure over the past two years; that the party acknowledges its shortcomings and failings; and that it’s asking the electorate to allow it to continue doing what its doing.

Later, Tipperary Independent TD Mattie McGrath quipped that Fine Gael’s slogan should be “Keep The Arrogance Going” – in a nod to the party’s previous 2016 election slogan “Let’s Keep The Recovery Going”.

In 2011, the party’s election slogan was “Let’s Get Ireland Working” which was very similar to the title of an weekly Irish Sun jobs supplement “Get Ireland Working” at the time.

From Mr O’Rourke and Ms McEntee’s exchange:

Seán O’Rourke: “Helen McEntee, is it correct that the Fine Gael slogan in this campaign is ‘A Future To Look Forward To’?”

Helen McEntee: “Well I think what we’re focused on is a future for everybody to look forward to. As I’ve said we have made huge progress but it’s not enough and we acknowledge, in particular, and the Taoiseach, over the weekend, acknowledged that we still had massive challenges.

“In particular in health and housing.

“But we are actually starting to see progress and listening to [Sinn Féin TD] David [Cullinane] there you would assume that nothing has happened. No houses have been built, and there is nothing being invested in our health service.

“We have the largest health budget than ever before. While we know that we have difficulties, particularly in our emergency departments, we’re investing in our primary care centres, in our community teams across the country and things like that take time to start filtering through into our hospitals.

“In terms of our houses, we’ve built, as I’ve said earlier on, it’s only in the past two and a half years that we’ve had money, that we’ve only in the past two and a half years probably had a construction sector that was able to function, given the fact that it was so decimating because of the Fianna Fáil previous government.

“But we have now built and brought 50,000 houses into the market. We will have 10,000 further social houses this year. And this is because we have a plan for our housing sector.

“We have a plan for the health sector, we have a plan for childcare, for climate change….”


Listen back in full here

Yesterday: “You Had Nine Years”

Earlier: Saturday, February 8

Pic: Eamon Melia

From top: members of The Black and Tans ; Minister for Justice Charlie Flanagan, right, and Taoiseach Leo Varadkar, centre, with Minster for Business, Enterprise, and Innovation Heather Humphreys, left, and Minister for Rural and Community Affairs Michael Ring (second from right) at a Fine Gael ‘think-in’ last September; a tweet from the taoiseach this morning.

This evening.

Minister for Justice Charlie Flanagan has released the following statement:

“As a Government, we have at all times sought to have a national programme of commemorations that is authentic, sensitive and inclusive.

“We very much support the recommendation that there should be specific State-led initiatives to commemorate the Royal Irish Constabulary (RIC) and the Dublin Metropolitan Police (DMP).

“However, given the disappointing response of some to the planned event on 17th January, I do not believe that the event, as planned, can now take place in an atmosphere that meets the goals and guiding principles of the overall commemorative programme.

“Therefore, I am announcing its deferral.”

“I know that, regrettably, this decision will be a cause of hurt and upset to many people. I commit to proceeding with an alternative commemoration in the months ahead.

“As a next step, I will consult further with the expert Advisory Group on Centenary Commemoration, with the all-party consultative group on commemoration and with other stakeholders, with a view to organising an event that is inclusive and fully respectful of all the traditions and memories on this island.”

Govt defers RIC commemoration event (RTÉ)




Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin released the following statement in respect of the controversial ceremony to commemorate the Royal Irish Constabulary and Dublin Metropolitan Police on January 17 in Dublin Castle…

“Over the last twenty years a model of inclusive commemoration has been developed and implemented by successive governments. Central to this has been the role of public consultation and expert advice.

“The government has caused an unnecessary controversy around this RIC/DMP event by abandoning this approach.

“Recommendations on the commemoration of the War of Independence and Civil War were submitted to government by an all-party and expert group two years following a widespread public consultation.

“These recommendations were accepted by government. While these recommendations included the sensible view that the role of the RIC should be remembered in some way, there was no discussion involving the most appropriate method of doing so.

“An all-inclusive event, remembering all who died during the War of Independence is already scheduled and it was understood by all involved that this would be an appropriate moment to demonstrate that we also remember those who did not support the struggle for national independence which was secured by the men and women who are the focus of many other events.

“It is important to explore every element of this period and use this time as an opportunity to properly discuss every aspect of a complex history.

“It is also undeniably true that many decent people joined the police force of the day for legitimate reasons but found themselves on the wrong side of history. Indeed, elements of the RIC worked closely with those fighting for Irish freedom at great personal risk.

“I am acutely conscious also of how this controversy, and some of the language being used in the debate surrounding it, will be received by different traditions in Northern Ireland.

“We need to have a calm and mature discussion. In my view, the event organised by the Justice Minister is not the appropriate vehicle to explore such complex themes.

“It was an error of judgement compounded by the Taoiseach and the Tánaiste and their reaction to those who have decided not to participate.

“They should withdraw their accusation that, to quote Minister Flanagan, those who choose not to attend this event are abandoning “mutual understanding and reconciliation”.

“The years ahead will have many anniversaries that will pose difficulties and confront us with challenging questions about the country’s journey to independence.

“It is critically important that we come through this process in a spirit of honesty and reconciliation.

“We need to rediscover the generosity that informed the 1916 commemorations and return to the open engagement and consultation of that process.

“This event will go ahead, and those who wish to participate in it should be fully respected in doing so.

“However, I also believe that the special cross-party committee on commemorations should be reconvened to consult on future commemorations and that it be asked to look again at the question of how we appropriately appraise and remember the activities of the RIC and the DMP over the course of the coming years.”


From top: Dublin City Council Fine Gael councillor Anne Feeney; How Dublin City Councillors voted last night on the motion to boycott the RIC commemoration service;

This morning.

On RTÉ’s Today with Seán O’Rourke, presented by Cormac Ó hEadhra.

Fine Gael councillor on Dublin City Council Anne Feeney spoke to Mr Ó hEadhra about last night’s vote by the council to boycott the national commemoration service for the Royal Irish Constabulary.

The motion to boycott the event was passed by 38 votes to ten.

Ms Feeney was one of the ten councillors to vote against it.

This morning, shetold Mr Ó hEadhra:

“Firstly, what I want to say, I want to acknowledge the great job that state and the country and Government, and all parties involved, did, in relation to the commemoration of the 1916 patriots and events.

“We did that with great respect and with great dignity.

“And I think people generally felt part of that. And many of us remember the relatives who fought and sacrificed in relation to that.

“We’re now heading into much trickier water with the forthcoming commemorations around the War of Independence, the Civil War and various others.

“And I’m not sure we’re ready for this.

“My personal view is that we maybe should reconsider these commemorations in terms of what we’re trying to achieve. And are we just opening up division and derision which I’d hoped we were leaving behind in relation to how Irish we are.”

Asked if she’ll stay away from the commemoration or if she’ll attend, she said:

“Well I wasn’t invited, so that hasn’t arisen at this point. But, you know, I prefer to look forward and I prefer to…”

When she was asked if she thinks it’s a “good thing to commemorate the RIC”, she said:

“It depends on the commemoration really. And it depends on the appetite for it in the country. You know, I think we have to listen to people, we have to listen to the public and certainly there were very decent people in the RIC as well as rogues.

“And, you know, I think, for a family of deceased members of these, some form of commemoration that would be apt for them, at least appropriate. But I think we need to take, you know, take on board the temperature and listen to people.

“A lot of people feel it’s not appropriate at this point.”

It was put to Ms Feeney that Taoiseach Leo Varadkar, who supports the initiative, suggested that councillors or mayors who do not wish to attend should “at least allow someone in their stead”.

Ms Feeney said:

“Well I think they should allow them go. But I think, you know, it’s up to individuals to make up their own mind in relation to it.

“And what Minister Charlie Flanagan has stated is, is that this commemoration is to commemorate the role of Irish men in the RIC police force in Ireland, not the black and tans, not the rogue ones, not the dysfunctional ones.

“Now that’s the official line on that but we just need, we all need to be sensitive and respectful of each other as we go forward.

“I think as a nation, we should have matured that much.”

Listen back in full here

Earlier: “Obscene”

Pic of votes: Claire Dunne

“Well, if Fine Gael sought to silence her, we well and truly failed – I think is the first thing to say.

“And I think the second thing to say is the decision to deselect her is looking better by the moment.”

Health Minister Simon Harris commenting on deselected Fine Gael Wexford candidate Verona Murphy’s most recent comments.


A roadside Verona Murphy Poster in Wexford during the recent by-election

This morning.

Deselected Fine Gael Wexford candidate Verona Murphy gave an interview to South East Radio’s Morning Mix.

Via Independent.ie:

She said she was silenced by the party and subject to a media ban in the final days of her recent by-election campaign.

Speaking to South East Radio on Thursday, Ms Murphy said she had raised the issue of migrants as a security issue. “I apologise for the words I use. I stand over the fact it is a security issue,” she said.

In her unsuccessful by-election campaign, Ms Murphy said asylum seekers coming to Ireland have to be “deprogrammed” as they “carry angst” and may have been “infiltrated” by Isil. She also claimed that children as young as three were being “manipulated” by Isil.

Ms Murphy said that in her role as president of the Irish Road Haulage Association (IRHA) she was at the “coalface” of the issue of migrants trying to get into the country.

She said she had attended security briefings from MI5 and Interpol on the issue of migration. “I doubt anybody in Dáil has as much experience of the migrant issue as I have,” she said.

Now watch me migrate to the far right

Listen back here

‘Do we have to wait to have a London Bridge incident on Wexford bridge?’ – Verona Murphy insists she’s not a racist (Independent.ie)

Verona Murphy to decide on future as general election independent candidate (RTÉ)

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar and Fine Gael Wexford by-election candidate Verona Murphy

This afternoon.

Via RTÉ:

Verona Murphy has confirmed to RTÉ News that she is to be deselected as a general election candidate by Fine Gael.

Ms Murphy said she is going to take a break from politics over Christmas, and will assess her options in the New Year.

During the by-election campaign Ms Murphy apologised after claiming that some asylum seekers coming to Ireland have to be “deprogrammed” as they “carry angst” and may have been “infiltrated by ISIS”.

Murphy confirms she will be deselected as a Fine Gael candidate (RTÉ)

Previously: Verona Murphy on Broadsheet