Election campaign briefs
Yates predicts two seats for Fianna Fail
Ivan Yates (right), the former Minister and Wexford TD, has predicted Fianna Fail will take two seats in Wexford. In his series of election predictions on his Newstalk Breakfast show, last week, Yates forecast two Fianna Fail newcomers, James Browne and Malcolm Byrne will join Mick Wallace, Brendan Howlin and Paul Kehoe in the new Dail next month, at the expense of a Fine Gael seat.
'Job best route out of poverty'
Minister Paul Kehoe said the party's plans to support working families by making work pay include a new Working Family Payment to ensure that every parent working 15 hours or more per week takes home at least €11.75 per hour.
'Fine Gael has a long term economic plan to keep the recovery going in Wexford with three connected steps: more and better jobs; making work pay; and investment in better services,' he said in a statement.
'We are focusing on working families and making work pay for them. This is because we need to help the high number of jobless households in Ireland who were abandoned by previous Fianna Fáil Governments. Fine Gael believes that a job is the best route out of poverty and that work should pay.'
Intervention needed in beef row
Sinn Féin election candidate Johnny Mythen is backing the protesting beef farmers after attending the IFA's recent protest outside Slaney Meats in Bunclody. 'It is disappointing that, after long negotiation, no agreement could be reached between farmers and beef processors,' he said. 'The fact that farmers are in such dire straits but could not get recognition of that from the beef processors shows how necessary is intervention from the Minister of Agriculture.'
'When British farmers are getting €350 per head more for their cattle than their Irish counterparts, then something is very wrong,' he continued.
FG's plan for older people
Fine Gael's Michael D'Arcy has highlighted his party's plans to support older people in County Wexford and ensure that older years are better years. The plan aims to safeguard and improve State entitlements for older people, and will provide enhanced supports for older people to live independently in their homes amongst their own communities in County Wexford.
'Our package of measures for older people is worth €870 million, and is the second largest commitment in our Long Term Economic Plan after the abolition of USC.
"Fine Gael wants Ireland to be one of the best countries in the world in which to grow old. We can achieve this if we keep the recovery going and create the resources to support better public services.
Banking inquiry 'beggar's belief'
Responding to Senator Michael D'Arcy's recent statement on the banking enquiry, Sinn Féin's Johnny Mythen said that it beggar's belief that the report of the Banking Inquiry failed to assign political or financial responsibility for the banking crisis and for the actions taken by the government at the time.
He said Sinn Féin was proven right in stating that senior bondholders should have carried the burden and not allow the enormous private debt to be placed on the shoulders of the Irish people. 'The report would have us believe that nobody in government or the financial sector was complicit, that it all just happened and now we all should move on. It truly treats the Irish people with contempt,' he said.
24/7 psychiatric service needed
Aoife Byrne, the first-time Fianna Fail General Election candidate in Wexford, has demanded that access to a 24/7 psychiatric service be provided for County Wexford.
Speaking after the recent launch of the Fianna Fail proposals, 'Improving Mental Health', Ms Byrne said, 'we need to deal with mental health Issues as seriously as we deal with our physical health. For far too long now mental heath issues have been swept under the carpet and patients and their families have had to deal with it in isolation. This was never acceptable and I will ensure that this issue is dealt with at a national level.'