Dara Murphy’s expense claims


A chara, – The most disappointing aspect of the controversy surrounding Fine Gael TD Dara Murphy and his expense claims has been the response of Leo Varadkar to this whole affair (Home News, November 30th).

The Taoiseach’s mealy- mouthed statement that his Cork North Central TD attended the Dáil for at least 120 days does not justify the fact that Dara Murphy claimed full salary and expenses despite being absent for the majority of Dáil sitting days over the past two years, as a result of working in another job in Brussels.

Fobbing into the Dáil on Mondays and Fridays may make him technically “compliant” with the rules regarding expense claims, but it in no way indicates that he represented the interests of his constituents.

For the leader of the Government to not only fail to publicly admonish such behaviour but actually tacitly defend it is a slap in the face of the people of Cork North Central as well as the taxpayers who fund the salaries and expenses of TDs.

TDs who are supposed to work for the people of this country, not swan off to a second job in Europe. – Is mise,


Dublin 12.

Sir, – At any time, Miriam Lord’s written word is worth reading.

Her recent article (Dáil Sketch, November 28th) on the absentee “drisheen” TD is compulsory reading for all (especially the Boys of Fair Hill!): it takes some beating as a masterpiece of ironic wit. – Yours, etc,



Dublin 6.

Sir, – The Taoiseach, being the boss of Fine Gael, says that Dara Murphy has been working in the main in Europe for the last two years as if this is justifiable reason for his lack of commitment to his main job.

We are extremely lucky based on this logic that Leo Varadkar is no longer a doctor in charge of a ward. – Yours, etc,



A chara, – There is an expression in Irish to indicate that there was no alternative: Ní raibh an dara suí sa bhuaile ann (There was not a second seat in the milking parlour).

Dara Murphy, as befits his name, was blest with the great good fortune of having a second seat (an dara suí) in the virtual milking parlour that stretches from Dáil Éireann to Brussels.

Well done, Dara! – Is mise,



Baile Atha Cliath 5.