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Thursday 22 March 2018

Dail must keep control of budget decisions, says Bruton

Ralph Riegel

IRELAND cannot allow crucial decisions on the national budget to be surrendered from the Dail.

Fine Gael finance spokesman Richard Bruton last night warned that key EU fiscal reforms, as currently proposed, had significant flaws. And he angrily dismissed government claims that his concerns revealed him to be a Eurosceptic.

Mr Bruton said that while he was firmly pro-European, it was a very serious matter to propose surrendering any crucial budgetary decisions or scrutiny from the Dail.

"I think the European Commission is proposing very significant innovation here -- they are talking about pre-vetting our budget in a political arena of 16 ministers before the Dail sees sight of it," Mr Bruton warned.

"I think we need a proper, democratic system for reaching mature decisions that are consistent with the eurozone but it cannot be done by usurping the power of the Dail.

"I am certainly not a Eurosceptic. But there is an old saying, 'marry in haste and repent at leisure'. There is no point bringing in sudden rule changes if they are not going to be sustainable in the long-term."

Fine Gael leader Enda Kenny also hit out at Fianna Fail for suggesting that his party's concerns in any way undermined their pro-European stance.

Irish Independent

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