Sinn Féin TD used taxpayer-funded envelopes for Christmas card
20th December 2021
A Sinn Féin TD has used a taxpayer-funded Oireachtas envelope to send a constituent a Christmas card.
Limerick City TD Maurice Quinlivan used the pre-paid envelopes to send a local voter a card signed by himself and his wife.
The card featured a photo of Limerick city during a firework display and wished the local resident happy Christmas. “May the peace of Christmas and a happy and prosperous new year be with you and yours,” the inside of the card read.
The card also contained a flyer promoting Mr Quinlivan and local Sinn Féin senator Paul Gavan along with “useful numbers” for local services.
Mr Quinlivan and Sinn Féin did not respond to requests for comment on using the taxpayer-funded envelops to send Christmas cards. Sinn Féin leader Mary Lou McDonald recently raised eyebrows by signing her Christmas cards while sitting in a Dáil debate.
Meanwhile, two Sinn Féin TDs used taxpayer-funded Oireachtas envelopes to raise money for their party.
TDs and senators are prohibited under strict Oireachtas rules from using the envelopes for fundraising activities.
However, Sinn Féin’s education spokesperson Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire and Cavan/Monaghan TD Pauline Tully both used the pre-paid envelopes to raise funds for their party.
Mr Ó Laoghaire sent his party’s superdraw tickets in Oireachtas envelopes to supporters in October, along with another pre-paid Oireachtas envelope that could be returned to his office in Togher.
Entry to the Sinn Féin national draw is €10 and there are prizes worth €20,000 to be won over four weeks between November and December.
Mr Ó Laoghaire said a small number of Oireachtas envelopes were “used in error” to issue national draw tickets. “This should not have happened, isn’t an appropriate use of such envelopes and we regret it has happened,” he added.
Ms Tully sent tickets for a ‘Blotto draw’ to raise funds for her party organisation in Cavan. In a letter to members signed by Ms Tully, supporters were asked to buy a year’s membership for their monthly Blotto draw for €120.
Sinn Féin would not answer questions on whether they have issued instructions to TDs on the appropriate use of the envelopes.
Fine Gael Minister of State Colm Brophy was recently forced to apologise for using Oireachtas envelopes to send his supporters tickets for his party’s national draw.