2 Ministers vote against budget, 1 missing…

Interesting for cross border pol watchers that Sinn Fein is backing a cuts budget in Northern Ireland, whilst criticising the new coalition in the Republic for implementing Fianna Fail’s austerity focused four year plan. [See important caveat by IrishActuary on Twitter].

Just as interesting though is the way the so-called Manditory Coalition seems to be bursting apart at the seams, with the UUP Minister voting against, and Alex Attwood apparently missing in action…

Margaret Ritchie:

“Devolution was supposed to be about local decision making improving lives,” she said.

“DUP/Sinn Féin have rail-roaded through a budget for the next four years which simply reflected what has been handed down from London. There has been no real attempt to prevent the £4bn of Tory cuts.

“This will cause job losses and hardship for a lot of people and the SDLP believe we could have done more to stop it.”

I suppose asking four parties to share equally in the pain was too much to ask. However it remains to be seen whether the electorate will buy the dissenting judgement of the two minor parties, or take Sammy Wilson’s view that it’s little more than a cynical ploy…

Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty

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