Fine Gael to withdraw Dáil vote pairing deal


Fine Gael is to will withdraw vote pairing arrangements in the Dáil tomorrow after the Government rejected its plans for a two-day debate on the economy.

The Dáil resumes tomorrow after its 11-week summer break.

Party leader Enda Kenny said today it was important that all TDs, regardless of party, should have the chance to stand up in the Dáil and explain to Government ministers facts of the economic difficulties. He claimed the Government was "out of touch" with the reality facing the public.

“Fine Gael has made it clear that we regard the economic circumstances the country finds itself in as of such importance as to have a two-day debate devoted to the economy,” he said.

“People are concerned all over the country about job security, about losing their jobs about the cost of living and about increased government charges on all fronts,” he said at the National Ploughing Championships.

“The Government have rejected our claim and we believe this is a very important matter and a timely matter before the Budget and for that reason we are withdrawing pairing arrangements with the Government tomorrow to make the point” he said.

Under the vote-pairing deal, opposition TDs absent themselves from votes if a minister – with whom they have been “paired” cannot be present due to official business. In effect, they cancel each other out.