TDs Michael Fitzmaurice and Paul Murphy take seats in Dáil chamber

Welcome from Ceann Comhairle on behalf of all sides of the House

Newly elected TD for Dublin West Paul Murphy is pictured outside Leinster House prior to taking up his seat in the Dáil today. Photograph: Aidan Crawley/The Irish Times

Newly elected TD for Dublin West Paul Murphy is pictured outside Leinster House prior to taking up his seat in the Dáil today. Photograph: Aidan Crawley/The Irish Times

 

The two TDs elected in Friday’s byelections took their seats in the Dáil chamber this afternoon in advance of the Budget.

Independent TD Michael Fitzmaurice, who won in Roscommon-South Leitrim, and Socialist Party TD Paul Murphy who triumphed in Dublin South West, entered the chamber to applause from all sides of the House.

Mr Fitzmaurice was led down the steps of the chamber by Donegal South West Independent TD Thomas Pringle, while Mr Murphy was accompanied by fellow Socialist Party TD Joe Higgins.

The new TDs were introduced to Taoiseach Enda Kenny, Tanaiste Joan Burton, Fianna Fáil party leader Micheál Martin and Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams.

Ceann Comhairle Sean Barrett said time constraints would not allow an opportunity to properly welcome the new TDs.

There would be opportunities at a later date, he added.

“I know I speak on everybody’s behalf when we recognise that this is a very special day for both deputies to be elected to this House,’’ he added.

“I wish them both every success and happiness while they are here and I hope they make a major contribution to the workings of the House and its committees.’’

The new TDs were then introduced to their first experience of Dáil business in the chamber as Minister for Finance Michael Noonan rose to introduce his budget to a packed Dáil.

Earlier, Mr Murphy held a rally outside the entrance to Leinster House, where he reiterated his opposition to water charges. Mr Murphy and his followers chanted: “No way, we won’t pay.’’

Mr Fitzmaurice arrived with his family and Luke ‘Ming’ Flanagan MEP, the former TD for Roscommon-South Leitrim.

Meanwhile, newly-elected Independent Senator Gerard Craughwell has taken his place in the Seanad chamber to a welcome from all sides of the House.