The Budget battles have already begun, but at risk of having no clear winner
A bit like Christmas, it seems to start a little earlier every year. This week the first shots have been fired in the conflict over framing the Budget ahead of Tuesday, October 9.
Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe is lined up opposite Fianna Fáil's moneybags, Michael McGrath, whose party must sign off on the third Budget under the Confidence and Supply deal.
Mr Donohoe has told us he is taking a very prudent stance and will have just €800m to play around with. Much of the remaining spare cash is spoken for and he's not for taking up EU leeway to put another €900m into the system lest he takes us back to the bad old days.