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Alison O'Connor: Now we see why Yes vote was right move

Where would we be now if we had listened to those irresponsible opportunists who advised a No vote in our recent EU fiscal compact referendum?

We'd have been the wallies of Europe in the early hours of yesterday morning -- begging for scraps from the table and being looked on with scorn. After all, we'd have rejected an EU treaty less than a month ago, yet there we would have been with the temerity to ask for the debt burden to be reduced on Irish taxpayers.

I'd like to have seen Sinn Fein's Mary Lou McDonald or Pearse Doherty, or Joe Higgins or Richard Boyd Barrett explain just what approach Ireland might have taken in Brussels, had the voters taken their advice and given the EU the proverbial two fingers.

What happened at the summit is good news for Ireland, and time will tell exactly how good, but the government approach has been justified with incredible promptness.

But how could anyone have attempted to justify our inclusion in this new EU deal -- where the permanent bailout fund, the European Stability Mechanism, will be able to recapitalise banks directly -- on the back of a No vote?

Taoiseach Enda Kenny was over-egging it slightly when he said that what was deemed to be unachievable had now become a reality.

But he was bang on concerning the more immediate impact of Ireland getting equal treatment as other countries with difficulties.

In retrospect, the Taoiseach looks entirely justified in his approach of not shouting and roaring at his EU counterparts, and instead having patience, and playing it strategically. He was building a sense of trust.

This new EU deal is also perfectly timed for Mr Kenny personally. It's given him a much needed boost. Up to this, it looked as if he was heading into the summer holidays on a bit of a downer

Looking back on the campaign, there was always an element of risk about the Government setting the stakes so high in promising that a Yes vote would bring more stability.

But the government side can legitimately argue that such tactics on their side were necessary because of so much of the nonsense being pedalled by the No campaign.

Sinn Fein certainly came out the biggest sinners in this and that is because they are so good at what they do, and so convincing.

The Government's hand is now strengthened by the manner in which their political opponents in the treaty have been left so exposed.

Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams was out yesterday accusing the Government of "over-selling" what was agreed in Brussels.

But the reality is that naysayers will have absolutely no credible answer to give as to where Ireland would have been left had voters taken their advice at the polling stations on May 31.

Irish Independent