Thursday 19 September 2019

He's got a collection of bobbleheads and is a Ham Sandwich fan - the man behind Budget 2018

Minister Paschal Donohoe
Minister Paschal Donohoe
Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe announced that we will increase capital spending by €500m each year from 2019 to 2021. Photo: Stephen Collins/Collins Photos
Minister of Finance Paschal Donohoe Photo: Tony Gavin
Cormac McQuinn

Cormac McQuinn

Tomorrow's Budget will be Paschal Donohoe's first as both finance and public expenditure minister. But who's the man behind the sums and the tax and spending measures?

1. He's a film buff... and has the bobbleheads to prove it

The 43-year-old minister is a big movie fan and has a growing collection of bobblehead figurines in his office. They include Star Wars characters Yoda and Luke Skywalker as well as Wolverine from the X-Men. He adds one or two figures a year and says it reminds him of interests outside his serious work. Mr Donohoe's favourite TV Show is The Wire, but more recently he's been watching cowboys and robots show Westworld.

2. He's quite the music fan

CD Soundsystem.jpg
Minister of State for European Affairs Helen McEntee took a selfie with, among others, Leo Varadkar and Paschal Donohoe, before the LCD Soundsystem gig

Mr Donohoe also likes his music. He was among the Fine Gael TDs that went to the recent LCD Soundsystem gig in Dublin after which Taosieach Leo Varadkar was publically challenged by band members over the Eighth Amendment on abortion. He once told the Sunday Independent that the The Waterboys "have provided the soundtrack to my life". He also said he's listening to Biffy Clyro, Ham Sandwich and Twin Atlantic and he went to the Macklemore concert in the 3Arena last year.

3. He is a dedicated family man

A father-of-two, he's a dedicated family man. He does the school run when he can and strives to keep weekends free. On his work-life balance he previous said: "As corny as it all sounds, I really feel I have a responsibility to the country to do this job as well as I can. I have great responsibility as a dad to my young kids and I do all I can to do that as well."

4. He has a wide political portfolio

Mr Donohoe was educated at St Declan's CBS in Cabra and, appropriately enough for his current job, studied Economics and Politics at Trinity College. He has been a Dublin city councillor, Fine Gael senator and, as a TD, has been appointed European Affairs junior minister and later held the senior transport brief. Last year he oversaw the spending element of the Budget while then-finance minister Michael Noonan was in charge of tax measures.

5. He declined to go toe-to-toe with Leo and Simon

He was mentioned as a possible future Fine Gael leader ahead of Enda Kenny's departure earlier. However, Mr Donohoe consistently ruled himself out ahead of the leadership contest and he threw his support behind the ultimate winner Mr Varadkar once it kicked off.

Online Editors

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