Maman Poulet | Clucking away crookedly through media, politics and life

And then there were Seven

April 27th, 2010 · 7 Comments · Irish Politics

So as expected there were politicians giving up and ‘voluntarily forgoing’ their pensions all day. Labour’s 3 ministerial pension holders went first (not before time) followed by the Fine Gael crew (not before time either) and then came Bertie (Fianna Fáil were so fed up dealing with requests from the Press for comments on Bertie that they released a press release directing all Bertie related queries to one particular press officer.)

A few other FF Oireachtas members and MEP’s have offered up their pensions (while still in well paid jobs with expenses mind) until they leave the Dáíl. But there are still the OverSalaried Seven sticking it out.

They are TD’s Jim McDaid, Michael Woods and Noel Treacy; two MEPs – Pat the Cope Gallagher and Liam Aylward; and two Senators: Ivor Callely and Terry Leyden.

What’s keeping them? And what’s keeping Brian Cowen in sorting it? This issue isn’t about the money at all. It’s the example being set, it’s the mortgages that can’t be paid by people who have lost their jobs, or had severe cuts to their salaries. And increasingly it’s about Brian Cowen’s leadership. Commentators are now lining up to say that Cowen can’t hack this and is making a mess of it all (what took them so long?).

Update:: I was reminded on Twitter about Joe Higgins MEP who has a Dáil pension and is an MEP. Higgins donates this to political campaigns and local groups. No word on if he will give it up to the state.

Update no. 2 – now there are five FF members who have yet to give up their pensions. Senators Terry Leyden and Ivor Callely announced they were forgoing this morning. Leyden wants all public sector pensions reviewed – he won’t take this pain alone it seems. Overnight I see that Jim McDaid said his pension is worth ‘only €425’ per fortnight but he won’t be giving it up due to the mob frenzy.


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