Tag Archives | Taoiseach

Leo Varadkar paper speech at QUB

Leo Varadkar: “we need to build more bridges and fewer borders”

LEO VARADKAR delivered a robust but polite lecture at Queen’s University Belfast this morning, his first public engagement in Northern Ireland in his new role as Taoiseach. The artfully crafted speech quoted local poets and Winston Churchill as well as ending with a positive story that echoed something he’d recently heard Jeffrey Donaldson say in more…

Taoiseach on Border Poll: “There are much more serious issues to deal with in the immediate terms and that is where our focus is.”

Northern Ireland Secretary of State, Theresa Villiers, was, rightly, quick to dismiss Sinn Féin’s attempted distraction predictably opportunistic call for a border poll following the EU referendum result.  Here’s what she told Radio Ulster listeners “The Good Friday Agreement sets out the conditions under which I am required to call for a border poll – more…

Judge Smithwick: “I think this was singularly ill-advised.”

I had mentioned the apparent disagreement between the chair of the Smithwick Tribunal, Judge Smithwick, and the Irish Justice Minister, Alan Shatter, over the latter’s proposed ‘deadline’, of 30 November, for the Tribunal’s final report. And in correspondence from the time, just released to the Oireachtas along with the Tribunal’s interim report [pdf file], Judge Smithwick made clear the extent more…

Smithwick Tribunal: “It is understood the tribunal chairman is concerned about the deadline”

According to the Irish Justice Minister, Alan Shatter, speaking to the BBC on Thursday – about the Irish Government setting the Smithwick Tribunal a ‘deadline’ of 30 November for its final report. [Irish Justice Minister Alan] Shatter said the November deadline was not set in stone. “We’ve been informed by the tribunal chairman that he believes the tribunal will more…

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Euro crisis: “If Portugal asks, we will be ready to intervene…”

To the apparent outrage of some, last night Taoiseach Enda Kenny agreed to defer seeking a conclusion to talks on reducing Ireland’s bail-out interest rate at the two-day EU summit in Brussels.  At the IIEA blog, Karl Whelan argued After a lot of fighting talk about renegotiation during the recent election campaign, the new Irish leader Enda more…

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“The result is a crisis in European democracy”

On the back of a survey of more than 5,000 people of working age in the UK, Germany, France, Poland and Spain, the Guardian editorialises on the future of the EU.  They’re promising a month long series of articles mapping out the social, political and economic terrain.  From the Guardian editorial The poll we publish today more…

“Corporation tax is now mentioned as a quid pro quo”

Encouraging noises are one thing, but at the first EU late nighter of Taoiseach Enda Kenny’s tenure the BBC reports some possibly premature tweeting from EU President Herman Van Rompuy. In a message on Twitter, Mr Van Rompuy had initially said: “We have an agreement on the Pact for Euro.” The message was later amended to: more…

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Rehn: “I expect this issue of pricing policy will be looked at from the overall European perspective…”

The European Union’s economic and monetary affairs commissioner, Olli Rehn, has been making somewhat encouraging noises  [for the new Irish government] ahead of a series of key European meetings for the incoming Taoiseach. From the Irish Times breaking news report “We look forward to continue supporting the Irish people and the next Irish government in the more…

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“Yet another crucial moment in the debt drama is upon us.”

EU leaders are meeting in Brussels today, including caretaking Taoiseach Brian Cowen, and the Irish Times‘ Derek Scally has had sight of a draft paper on Frau Bundeskanzlerin’s “grand bargain”. From the Irish Times report The draft paper is low on detail but high on ambition: “to create a permanent connection between European competitiveness, growth and more…

BRIAN COWEN - EXTREME POLITICAL TURBULENCE (1)

All political business done; Cowen goes to the Aras

So this afternoon we’ll get to know the date set by Fianna Fail for the next Irish General Election. Mr Cowen bows out of politics, but apparently bequeaths his substantial local Offaly inheritance to his brother Barry, who will go head to head with Councillor John Foley. (See the Irish Times for a current list more…

BRIAN COWEN - EXTREME POLITICAL TURBULENCE (1)

Ministers desert Cowen’s Restaurant at the end of the Universe…

Just in passing Brian Cowen’s government appears to be in free fall as four members of his cabinet have added their resignations to that of Micheal Martin. All of them were retiring from the Dail at the next election, and therefore have nothing to lose from their actions. Update: Dempsey’s just said on Morning Ireland, more…