Government wins no-confidence vote against Dáil by 85 votes to 66

Sinn Féin’s motion to remove the government was defeated in the Dáil by a majority of 85 votes to 66, with one abstention.

The result, at 7.15 percent, was better for the coalition than many had expected given the government’s vote of confidence.

Tánaiste Leo Varadkar said the functioning majority of government was evident from the outcome and that Sinn Féin inadvertently demonstrated that the government would pass a budget and ensure that there would be no SF government next year, the year after, or possibly even after will give.

If the motion had been accepted, the budget would have been pushed back and people would not have got relief before winter. It was good government, he stressed, with the highest labor force in the state’s history and a record level of foreign direct investment. Jobs were created in all regions.

Not all change is a change for the better, and Sinn Féin’s would be a change for the worse, he said. In a few years there will be fewer jobs and less investment because SF “doesn’t understand how the economy works”.

Earlier, the Taoiseach faced Sinn Féin’s motion of censure by saying it was a debate between those who believe in addressing problems and those who believe in exploiting them.

Micheal Martin said: “We are told that the government has allegedly failed by failing to implement its full program in just two years.

“Last week Mary Lou McDonald insisted that Sinn Féin should only be sentenced after 10 years and two full terms. As always, double standards are the watchword of this cynical opposition.”

“Ireland is a modern and dynamic country that needs to overcome its problems. But those who denied the achievements “simply show they have no interest in honest debate,” he said.

“They prove that the progress of our country and the future of our people are not really their main concern,” the Taoiseach said.

“Calling ‘not enough’, ‘more’ and ‘what-about’ represents an approach to politics that is fundamentally dishonest.”

The two most pressing crises the coalition will take office with are a historic pandemic and the fastest-moving recession on record, he said.

“I have promised that we will do everything we can to alleviate the terrible toll and work to ensure a speedy recovery as possible. After every fair judgment. This Government has served the Irish people well in these critical challenges.”

Ireland has been rated as one of the top three in the world for the resilience of its Covid response. It had the second highest vaccination rate in Europe.

“We did more right than the vast majority of countries. If Ireland had performed at the average EU level there would have been over 4,500 more Covid deaths.

“If we had performed at the same level as Britain, there would have been 5,500 more deaths.”

Ministers have had to endure attacks over the launch of vaccines as a mess, he said, but “it was the biggest public health mobilization in Irish history and frankly the disruptions were minor.” Meanwhile, youth unemployment in Ireland was the lowest in Europe .

“Continued government action has helped our country emerge from recession faster and more successfully than most,” the Taoiseach added, but “the hard work to ensure high employment levels and a strong economy appears to have bored the opposition .”

Sinn Féin Chairwoman Mary Lou McDonald said the motion was submitted because change is needed now more than ever. The government is out of touch, out of ideas and now out of time, she said.

“A government that is disintegrating before our eyes has lost the support of the people. Last week it lost its Dáil majority, now the Taoiseach is struggling to get the votes to win a confidence motion,” she said.

“The writing is on the wall – this coalition is bursting at the seams.”

The coalition should go now and make way for a government that finally puts workers and families first, she said.

“Not only has this government failed to improve, it has actually managed to make a bad situation so much worse. This is especially true for housing, healthcare and the cost of living crisis, which has literally marginalized households.

“The government has no urgency, no vision, no capacity to grasp the seriousness of these issues in the lives of ordinary people,” Ms McDonald said.

“After every fair judgment, the Taoiseach fails.

“Far too often the message from government to people has been ‘suck it up, go ahead, look around, you’re on your own’. Well, that’s just not good enough.

“People expect so much more from those who choose them – from those who pay them very well to get the job done.

“Let’s not forget that this coalition came into office and said they were going to fix housing. This was a very bold statement that hasn’t aged well. Under the eyes of the Taoiseach, the housing crisis has escalated into a housing disaster.”

However, Darragh O’Brien, Fianna Fáil’s Minister for Housing, said Mary Lou McDonald showed that her arrogance “has gone not just stratospheric but intergalactic”.

It would take Nasa to track its progress, he added. Meanwhile, Sinn Féin was blocking progress and sowing discontent, he said.

Labor Party leader Ivan Bacik said the country needs a new government and the people also need a pay rise.

The tone of the debate was “apparent outrage and mock anger,” she claimed, “but the government we need is one of the left… and it’s not this government.”

Sinn Féin spokesman for housing, Eoin Ó Broin, cited homelessness and alleged policy failings in the housing crisis – which Social Democrat Deputy Leader Catherine Murphy said has “seized into disaster”, giving the description of the president Michael D. Higgins reflects.

Only every second person is likely to have become a homeowner by the time they retire. Conscious housing policy makes housing unaffordable, she said.

Paul Murphy of People Before Profit said the government is doing a good job of representing the people who are benefiting from the housing shortage and cost of living crisis. Government wins no-confidence vote against Dáil by 85 votes to 66

Fry Electronics Team

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