Expelled FG TDs want Dáil speaking time
Creighton denies move to establish new party
Fine Gael TD Lucinda Creighton
The group of Fine Gael TDs expelled from the parliamentary party over the abortion Bill will press the Government for Dáil speaking rights but say they have no plans to form a new political party.
Former minister of State Lucinda Creighton, who resigned her post and lost the whip for her opposition to the Protection of Life During Pregnancy Bill, yesterday emphatically denied she was involved in moves to found a new party.
“I have not spoken to anyone about setting up a new party and have nothing to do with any such moves,” she said.
Ms Creighton said she had spoken to other members of Fine Gael who had lost the whip about how they could go about getting speaking rights and becoming members of Oireachtas committees.
“Billy Timmins has put down a motion on the Dáil order paper, and I am very supportive of his attempt to ensure that TDs have their right to speak and get on committees protected,” she added.
Asked about a newspaper report that she had recently held a meeting with Michael McDowell, Ms Creighton said that she had bumped into the former PD leader in the Law Library and had joined him for a coffee with barrister Paul O’Higgins, but there was nothing more to it than that.
Wicklow TD Mr Timmins said the only thing he was involved with was putting down a motion to allow a like-minded group of TDs to get time in the Dáil.
Mr Timmins said it was inherently undemocratic and unfair that elected TDs would not be given the opportunity to put forward their views on legislation.
“As far as I am concerned that is the priority for those of us who have been put out of the Fine Gael parliamentary party. There is nothing else on my agenda at the moment.”
The other TDs who lost the whip last month along with Ms Creighton and Mr Timmins are Brian Walsh of Galway West, Terence Flanagan of Dublin North-East and Peter Mathews of Dublin South.
Roscommon Fine Gael TD Denis Naughten, who lost the whip two years ago for voting against the Government over local hospital services, is also involved in the campaign for speaking rights.