FACTFILE: The Lenihan years
- Brian Lenihan was born in Dublin in 1959.
- He was educated at Belvedere College, where he was School Captain. He went on to study law at Trinity College and later Cambridge.
- He began lecturing in Trinity College in 1984 and in the same year was called to the Irish Bar.
- Brian was a member of a legendary political dynasty. His father Brian was a cabinet minister for over twenty-five years and rose to the position of Tanaiste.
- His aunt Mary O'Rourke is also a former cabinet minister and brother Conor, a former junior minister, was a TD until he lost his seat in the recent election.
- Brian first held political office in 1996 when he took the seat previously held by his father in Dublin West.
- As Minister for Children Lenihan he announced changes to Ireland's adoption laws and increased the numbers of Gardaí employed in vetting childcare workers.
- He joined the Cabinet in 2007 as Minister for Justice.
- Following the election of Brian Cowen as Taoiseach on 2008, he was promoted to the Department of Finance.
- His time as Minister was dominated by the economic crisis and he brought in three government budgets within the space of fourteen months, initiated the bank guarantee, nationalised Anglo Irish Bank and created NAMA.
- The controversial measure of removing medical cards from most over 70 year olds by means testing in 2009 Budget caused a massive public outcry.
- On 7 April 2009, he delivered an emergency budget overriding the measures previously announced, amounting to a further €3.25bn increases in taxes and reductions in spending programmes.
- In a Fianna Fail election wipe-out this March he still managed to be re-elected, taking the only FF seat in the capital.
- At the time of his untimely death he was the party’s deputy leader and spokesperson on Finance.
- He was Married, with two children, to Patricia Ryan, a Circuit Court judge.
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