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Housing records to come under spotlight in election

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Stock photo: Getty Images

Stock photo: Getty Images

Stock photo: Getty Images

Fianna Fáil will put housing and homelessness at the centre of both its Budget priorities in the coming weeks, and its next general election campaign.

That campaign effectively kicked off last week when the Taoiseach proposed the May 2020 date for the election.

The decisions both parties make over the next eight months will be with that election - which could fall sooner - in mind.

On housing, Fianna Fáil has plenty of ammunition to attack the Government with given its record over the past eight years. Fine Gael and Housing Minister Eoghan Murphy will reel off statistics that indicate things are improving, but the most devastating statistic of all - the 10,000-plus people who are homeless - is impossible to escape and a stain on the party's period in power.

However, Fianna Fáil has also had influence via the Confidence and Supply deal.

A new survey shows that housing and homelessness is the number one budget priority for almost half the country. The Taxback.com taxpayer sentiment survey was conducted in advance of Budget 2020. This sentiment is an echo of the same pre-budget survey last year, which saw 49pc of respondents voicing a similar contention.

The survey, which involved more than 2,000 taxpayers nationwide, found that the Government's response to the housing crisis will be an influential factor for the vast majority (73pc) of Irish voters at the next general election.

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