TDs and Senators spent €1,200 on sympathy cards in past two years
TDs and senators spent more than €1,200 of public money on sympathy cards within the past two years.
Christmas cards, newsletters and protest posters were also among the print jobs carried out by the Oireachtas printing facility, which costs more than €1 million annually to run.
Documents released under the Freedom of Information Act show that 19 TDs and Senators used the Oireachtas printing facility to print more than 10,000 sympathy cards at a total cost of €1,235 between January 2011 and the end of October 2012.
The majority of the cards feature a single white lily. One includes a picture of candles burning; a second features a single candle burning before a stained-glass window; while another bears a Celtic cross and lilies.
While most cards carry simple sentiments such as “Please accept this expression of deepest sympathy” and “Thinking of you at this sad time”, other cards include verses.
A card from Limerick Fine Gael TD Dan Neville includes a verse called We Remember Them, while his party colleagues Pat Breen and Billy Timmins both opt for poems by the late Clare poet John O’Donohue.
A card from Fianna Fáil Senator Mark Daly features the poem I See His Blood Upon the Rose by Joseph Mary Plunkett, while a card commissioned by Donegal Senator Brian Ó Domhnaill includes Footprints in the Sand.