FG's bright ideas worth nothing if not delivered
When he became Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar vowed to represent "people who get up early in the morning". The commitment appeared to be to shift the focus of policy back on to those in the squeezed middle - those working families on modest earnings who bear the brunt of high taxes and living costs.
The Taoiseach's party has now promised a new tax break for working families who employ childminders.
The detail is scant but it would essentially involve giving a tax credit to parents who employ a registered childminder in the home. It would build on existing subsidies in the childcare area, but differ as it would not be solely for those on low incomes and targeted at childminding.
Cash-strapped parents with young children would doubtless welcome such assistance.
But will it happen? A promise is worthless.
The proposed new subsidy is not the mere musings of two backbench TDs. It was mooted through an official statement from the Fine Gael press office, which adds some weight to the proposal.
Fine Gael can't have it both ways. It can't be both Government and Opposition at the same time. If the party is serious about providing additional supports for families, then this initiative should be in Budget 2019.
The income tax and related measures for Budget 2018 are coming into effect this week. Fine Gael would be well advised not to over-promise and under-deliver.