Burton defends Labour Party record in Government

Opinion poll shows a drop in support for the minority coalition party

Minister for Social Protection Joan Burton made her comments ahead of launching the twentieth edition of the INOU Working to Work booklet. Photograph: Éanna Ó Caollaí

Minister for Social Protection Joan Burton made her comments ahead of launching the twentieth edition of the INOU Working to Work booklet. Photograph: Éanna Ó Caollaí

Fri, Jun 14, 2013, 18:40

Minister for Social Protection Joan Burton has defended the Labour Party’s role in Government.

Speaking following the publication of today’s Irish Times/Ipsos MRBI opinion poll which showed a drop in support to 9 per cent for the minority coalition partner, Ms Burton said she was confident the Labour Party’s achievements in government would be positively judged at the next general election.

“In another sense” Ms Burton said this week has been “a very good week” for the Labour Party.

Referring to the launch of the Ireland Strategic Investment Fund (ISIF), she said: “I don’t think it has, as yet, received that much attention because I think the investment will be when the actual investment feeds into the economy and more people get back to work,” she said.

The latest opinion poll, carried out among a representative sample of 1,000 voters aged 18 and over, shows support for Fianna Fáil unchanged at 26 per cent, Fine Gael is down 1 point to 24 per cent, Sinn Féin recorded an increase of 3 points and are now at 21 per cent, the Labour Party is down to 9 per cent following a 1 point drop and Independents are down 2 points to 18 per cent.

“Obviously this is a difficult period for both parties in Government,” Ms Burton said.

“We have dealt again this week with issues that the country has grappled with for over 30 years when we addressed, when we said we would, the issues arising from the X case and the ABC case (judgement).”

“When it comes to the next general election, I’ll be very confident that people going to the polls will actually have a look at what the achievements have been as compared with what we actually inherited, “ she said.

“I think that what we have done this week sets the basis for very significant completion of the aims and ambitions of the Labour Party in Government over the next two-and-a-half years, particularly the issue of getting people back to work.”