Martin will not Step Down, he will Fight to the End, to Destroy the Fianna Fail Party; Leo and Michael, are like Clones?? Look what happened poor Dolly the Sheep, well the Backbenchers of FF Need to Grow more Balls? Get Rid of the Lame Duck, Martin?

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Coalition deal will not be reviewed despite calls by TDs

 17th July 2022

The Taoiseach and Tánaiste have ruled out a mid term review of the Coalition deal even as two former Fine Gael ministers joined Fianna Fáil TDs in calling for one to take place.

Former cabinet ministers Charlie Flanagan and Regina Doherty both said a review of the Programme for Government should take place after a number of Fianna Fáil TDs called for such action in the wake of the cost-of-living crisis.

“It’s natural at any half-time or midterm to review and reprioritise,” Mr Flanagan, a Fine Gael TD for Laois-Offaly said. “I don’t see it as a big deal.”

Ms Doherty, a Fine Gael Senator who is the Government leader in the Seanad, said she favoured a review given the cost-of-living crisis.

“I think the main priorities of the Programme for Government are still housing and health,” the former social protection minister said.

“But the cost-of-living has to be front and centre to everything we do. Energy shortages on top of the increased price of everything is as urgent as it gets. That has to be every party in Government’s priority.”

However, a spokesperson for the Taoiseach Micheál Martin said yesterday: “The Programme For Government was negotiated for the lifetime of the Government. The members voted four to one for it in 2020 and no review is planned.”

An almost identical statement was also issued by a spokesperson for Tánaiste Leo Varadkar, who said: “The Programme For Government was negotiated for the lifetime of the government. Fine Gael members voted four to one for it in 2020 and no review is planned.”

A spokesperson for the Green Party leader Eamon Ryan declined to comment on the matter.

The statements were issued after the Irish Independent yesterday reported on the demands of a number of dissident Fianna Fáil TDs for a review of the deal underpinning the Coalition that was agreed by the three parties just over two years ago.

Veteran Limerick TD Willie O’Dea said there was a need for a total review to redirect the working of Government and he was backed by a number of other deputies in his party, including Dublin TDs Jim O’Callaghan and John Lahart.

They argued the economic landscape had changed substantially since the Programme for Government was negotiated and agreed in June 2020 citing the war in Ukraine and rising inflation which has created a cost-of-living crisis for many households in recent months.

Speaking on Newstalk yesterday, Tipperary TD Jackie Cahill, who is also backing calls for a review of the Coalition deal, said that Fianna Fáil was losing its identity in Government.

“A party like us in a three party Government, it’s most definitely hard to keep your identity,” Mr Cahill said.

“We need to stamp our identity on this Government, we need to ensure that when we go to the polls in two-and-a-half years time, people will say: ‘Yes, Fianna Fáil achieved this in Government.’”

The last sitting administration to fully renegotiate their programme for government midway through their term was the Fianna Fáil-Green coalition in autumn 2009 amid the financial crisis, following a demand by the Greens.

That government subsequently collapsed in acrimony just over a year later as the State entered an EU-IMF bailout.

The Fine Gael-Labour government of 2011 to 2016 published a statement of priorities for its final two years in office after Joan Burton succeeded Eamon Gilmore as tánaiste and Labour leader in the summer of 2014

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