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Ministers must deliver a message of hope in Budget - albeit one rooted in realism

John Downing



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Big decisions: Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe issued this photo of his last-minute Budget discussions with Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Michael McGrath last night, promising: ‘Our country is dealing with many challenges but we are equipped to rise to them. And we will.’

Big decisions: Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe issued this photo of his last-minute Budget discussions with Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Michael McGrath last night, promising: ‘Our country is dealing with many challenges but we are equipped to rise to them. And we will.’

Big decisions: Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe issued this photo of his last-minute Budget discussions with Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Michael McGrath last night, promising: ‘Our country is dealing with many challenges but we are equipped to rise to them. And we will.’

The usual political theatre that comes with Budget Day will be very different this year. Bar the odd detail, the bits that are not about Covid-19 will be about Brexit - and the bits not about the consequences of that messy EU-UK divorce will be about the dreaded virus which has immobilised great chunks of the world.

But most important of all will be the tone struck by the only two ministers who have so far managed to project unity of purpose in this calamity Coalition. Happily, neither Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe nor Public Expenditure Minister Michael McGrath is much given to showboating as they work in tandem.


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