Thursday, 8 December 2005
Financial Resolution No. 5: General (Resumed).
Paul Kehoe (Wexford, Fine Gael)
Deputy Ring is a difficult act to follow. Some of the Deputies opposite are also very hard to follow because they really believe in their own rhetoric. It will be very hard to convince some of them that this was not such a great budget. It was a headline-grabbing, cautious, pre-election budget. I welcome the elements of the budget that look after people on social welfare but overall, it is a missed opportunity for this Government.
There is much expectation before budgets but not so much afterwards. What difference will this budget make to those sitting in traffic, on hospital waiting lists, waiting for orthodontic treatment and sitting in prefabricated school buildings? Will their situation change tomorrow or in two or three years' time? I do not think so. Will the homeless be looked after following this budget? I do not think so.
This Government has made endless promises. It came to power in June 1997 and will be in Government for ten years by June 2007.