THE comments by the Minister for Finance Michael Noonan today about the implications for next December’s budget of a No vote in the forthcoming referendum are unhelpful and will only serve to alienate potential Yes voters, according to Fianna Fáil Finance Spokesperson Michael McGrath.
Deputy McGrath stated, “The Irish people know that the budget deficit has to be closed and have shown a willingness over recent years to make sacrifices to achieve that goal. There is nothing positive to be gained in trying to frighten people into a Yes vote. The Minister and his Government colleagues would be far better employed selling the merits of the Treaty to people rather than playing on their fears. The people will not be endeared to the Yes side by comments such as those from Minister Noonan today.
“Fianna Fáil recognises the importance of having a secure funding stream available for the country in the form of the ESM in the event that we need it. We are committed to running a positive campaign which, while recognising the limits of the Treaty, recommends its acceptance as the best way forward for Ireland.
“The Government needs to quickly learn the lessons from the failed Oireachtas Inquiries referendum campaign. Meanwhile, we in Fianna Fáil will do everything we can to convince the people of the positive reasons for voting Yes rather than trying to frighten them into doing so.”