FG content to rely on SF support for Ross Bill to remain in power

Issued 24 May 2018

Labour Party Leader Brendan Howlin has expressed surprise at the deal by the Minister for Justice, with Sinn Féin on the Judicial Appointments Commission Bill which has added further intrigue to an already ridiculous position. He also said that Sinn Féin is now helping to keep this Government together.

Deputy Howlin said:

“Due to the ongoing farce in the Dáil over the Judicial Appointments Commission legislation, the Government should now withdraw this dog’s dinner of a bill and start again from scratch.

“It is not surprising to hear of unrest on the Fine Gael backbenches that they are now reliant on Sinn Féin support to pass the Bill, and the unpublished concessions that have been extracted to ensure the pet project of Minister Ross can proceed.

"The political reality is that Sinn Féin support for this measure is now helping to keep this Government together.

"The Minister has also conceded on an important policy issue worthy of serious and independent debate. It is all the more astonishing given the experience of the Minister for Justice and his supposed position on the party's law and order wing.

“It is an embarrassment that the Dáil would now proceed to present such a flawed piece of legislation to the Seanad, where once again they will seek to correct the glaring inconsistencies.

“The Minister's difficulty is compounded by his inability to seal a proper deal with Sinn Féin on the numbers that would be on the appointments commission which has turned what was already a farce into a crisis.

"If this proceeds we will be bringing the judiciary and parliament into disrepute,"

“It is becoming more evident now that Fine Gael is content to rely on Sinn Féin support to remain in power and satisfy the demands of Minister Ross, and that Sinn Féin is happy to give it. The budding relationship has progressed rapidly since the voting pact for the two by elections in the Seanad.”