Kenny and Burton implementing ‘Tory’ policies, Adams claims

Sinn Féin leader describes Joan Burton as an ‘architect of austerity’

Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams arriving  in Co Louth for the party’s annual think-in with  Jerry Kelly MLA, Mary Lou Mc Donald, deputy leader and by election candidate Martin Kenny. Photograph: Cyril Byrne/The  Irish Times

Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams arriving in Co Louth for the party’s annual think-in with Jerry Kelly MLA, Mary Lou Mc Donald, deputy leader and by election candidate Martin Kenny. Photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

 

Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams has called Tánaiste and Labour leader Joan Burton an “architect of austerity” in his keynote address to his party’s think-in.

Mr Adams accused both Ms Burton and Taoiseach Enda Kenny of implementing policies favoured by the British Conservative Party.

“Sinn Féin is opposed to Toryism north and south. We are as against austerity by David Cameron as much as we’re against austerity from Enda Kenny and Joan Burton,” he said.

Mr Adams said the upcoming Budget would be a “big test” for Ms Burton. Labour had bought into Fine Gael policies “in direct breach of the mandate they were given”, he said.

“Despite all the spin the Labour leader cannot distance herself from the disastrous policies of this Government and nor should she be allowed to. She is one of the architects of austerity.”

Struggling families would not accept talk of economic recovery until they saw evidence of it in their own lives.

He said half a million people had been forced to leave Ireland. “This Government sees as Fianna Fáil used to emigration as a policy option.”

Mr Adams also accused Taoiseach Enda Kenny of having expended political capital “fruitlessly defending” former minister for justice Alan Shatter and repeating the mistake with the nomination of Phil Hogan as EU Commissioner.

Turning to the byelections, Mr Adams said Sinn Féin would next week seek to move the writs for polls in Dublin South West and Roscommon South Leitrim.

There are vacant Dáil seats in the constituencies following the election of Fine Gael’s Brian Hayes and Independent Luke ‘Ming’ Flanagan to the European Parliament.

“We want these two elections to be held before the end of November. There’s no reason to delay them. The people of these constituencies deserve to be represented,” he said.

Sinn Féin byelection candidates Cathal King (Dublin South West) and Martin Kenny (Roscommon/South Leitrim) are featuring prominently during the two-day session at the Irish Countrywomen’s Association (ICA) headquarters in Termonfeckin, Co Louth.

Government sources have previously indicated the byelections could take place as early as October 10th. An election in Carlow-Kilkenny to replace Mr Hogan is slated for the spring.