Brian Lenihan last night said the word Brian Cowen finds so hard to utter -- "Sorry".
The Finance Minister apologised for any role the Government, Fianna Fail or he himself might have had in the causes of the economic crisis.
But Mr Lenihan insisted there were numerous factors at play in the downturn.
"I was a member of the party throughout that era and I'm certainly sorry for what happened -- no question of that.
"I might not have been in a position of lead responsibility, but in so far as even I was a member of the governing party, as a deputy supporting it or Minister of State supporting it, I have to take responsibility," he said on Newstalk's 'The Right Hook'.
Mr Lenihan's humble apology is in stark contrast to the response of Taoiseach Brian Cowen. Mr Cowen served as Finance Minister in the period before the downturn.
The Taoiseach's most celebrated failure to apologise came on the 'Late Late Show' last year.
Last month, when the Government launched its banking strategy, Mr Cowen was accused of being culpable from his period as Finance Minister.
But the Taoiseach again pointed to the international nature of the crisis.
"The idea that Ireland would've been immune to what has happened in relation to the fall of Lehmans and the total meltdown of the international financial system, it's time that we actually recognised that this country couldn't be immune," he said on March 30.