Sunday 4 December 2016

John Downing: Labour will just have to soldier on despite backbench TDs' dissent over welfare cuts

Published 10/12/2012 | 05:00

Picture: @stephenbyrne86
Picture: @stephenbyrne86

LABOUR really should stop trying to claim credit for the Budget horrors the party says it has stopped. In politics you very rarely – if ever – get credit for the harsh things you stop. You get even less credit for saying the horrors that happened would have been even more horrible only for your intervention.

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Thus, it did not in the least help Pat Rabbitte last week to say the regrettable 19pc carers' respite grant cut was better than cutting the carers' weekly payment. The public do not know and they do not care about such internal workings, and usually find such statements smack of coming at the argument from the nether end.

Mr Rabbitte might be in more fruitful territory with his assertion last night that Ireland will not pay the €3.1bn Anglo Irish Bank promissory note when it falls due next March. His statement, on RTE's 'The Week In Politics' programme, may or may not be borne out by future events in Ireland's ongoing marathon battle to wring a better deal from the European Central Bank.

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