Sunday 25 August 2019

Mick Wallace denies he sought MEP seat in Brussels 'for the money'

 

Mick Wallace. Photo: Collins Court
Mick Wallace. Photo: Collins Court
Cormac McQuinn

Cormac McQuinn

Mick Wallace has denied that he sought election to the European Parliament "for the money".

The outgoing Wexford TD and Celtic Tiger-era builder was previously declared bankrupt and a bank is currently seeking to repossess his Dublin home.

An MEP's salary of €105,000 is around €10,000 more than the pay for TDs and they are entitled to generous expenses.

But Mr Wallace has insisted this was not his motivation in seeking election to Europe, saying: "I didn't go to Brussels for the money. I'd make a lot more money in construction than I'd ever make in Brussels."

His remarks came on RTÉ's 'Your Politics' podcast where he was asked whether MEPs get an unfair rap over their expenses.

Mr Wallace said: "There's no doubt about it but the expenses are very generous in Europe ... but do I know of anyone that actually went over there just for the money? I don't."

He has already observed bureaucracy in Brussels and said: "It's going to be very challenging to make a difference over there.

"It's not the first challenge I've taken on."

Mr Wallace was earlier this month granted an adjournment of AIB Mortgage Bank's application to repossess his Dublin residence on Clontarf Road.

A judge was told there had been "a change in his financial circumstances" after his election as an MEP.

Irish Independent

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