The most consistent and angriest complaint on the door steps is of broken promises and the resultant targeting of those on low and middle incomes for cuts and new taxes.
When considering promises and announcements by Labour and Fine Gael in this General Election Campaign, voters are considering what happened to the promises they made in the last General Election Campaign.
The Public have been pointing out to me the litany of broken promises which include:
St. Michael’s Unit.
At a local level, Labour Leader Eamonn Gilmore, promised to protect South Tipperary General Hospital. Labour Minister, Kathleen Lynch, in government, closed down St Michael’s Psychiatric Unit in Clonmel and transferred it to Kilkenny.
We will “end the scandal of Hospital Trolleys” said Enda Kenny. The result is Trolley Chaos in our Emergency Departments, the closure of 2,000 hospital beds, the loss of 11,000 health staff and the loss of 2 million home help hours.
Through the 2011 General Election TESCO AD and in its election manifesto, The Labour Party promised to prevent the introduction of domestic water tax. In government they agreed to introduce this tax and Minister Alan Kelly is now implementing it.
In the 2011 General Election Tesco AD, the Labour Party said it would prevent Fine Gael reducing Child Benefit. Labour leader Joan Burton, in government, did the opposite and cut Child Benefit.
FAMILY HOME TAX
Fine Gael Leader, Enda Kenny, said “It Is Morally Wrong, Unjust and Unfair to Tax a Person’s Home”. But in Government, he introduced this unfair tax.
Speaking in the Dáil on 18th April 2012, Minister Joan Burton said she would only proceed with plans to reform the One Parent Family Payment by 2014/15 if she got a “credible and bankable commitment” by the time of Budget 2013 that the Irish Government would put in place “a system of safe, affordable and accessible child care, similar to what is found in the Scandinavian countries to whose systems of social protection we aspire”.
Minister Burton went ahead with the changes without any such child care system being in place.
Enda Kenny promised to increase the Garda Force by 2,000 Gardaí. The result was 2,000 less Gardaí, 130 Garda Station closed and increased levels of rural crime.
Then there was the Labour Manifesto promise to invest in ending fuel poverty which causes unnecessary deaths of older people every winter. “However, Labour will also take immediate action to alleviate the risk of fuel poverty in the short term by reinvesting €40 million from the carbon tax to alleviate fuel poverty, and by developing a national fuel poverty strategy as set out in Labour’s Fuel Poverty and Energy Conservation Bill.” Labour Party Manifesto 2011.
Instead, the heating allowances were cut by the Labour Leader
The Public are fed up of broken promises. They are taking the recent spate of promises from all the political parties with a large dose of salt.