Saturday, 27 June 2020
Taoiseach a Ainmniú (Atógáil) - Nomination of Taoiseach (Resumed)
Marian Harkin (Sligo-Leitrim, Independent)
Today, history is being made. We see the two old enemies come together with the Green Party to form a Government. For some this is strange but for me, having spent 15 years in the European Parliament, it is not strange to see parties and groups with different perspectives come together to find compromises. After 140 days it is time we had a Government. We are in the teeth of a possible hard Brexit and businesses in all sectors are on their knees looking for support. We are in the trough of a Covid-19 outbreak, people are anxious that another peak may lie ahead and we need to get people back to work.
I have some serious reservations about the programme for Government. It is very vague about how it will deliver a balance to the regions, about managing Brexit, about specific supports for agriculture and about how we will pay for it all. The three parties forming a Government, however, have a majority in the House and, collectively, the highest percentage of the vote. I wish Deputy Micheál Martin and his Government well. The people deserve good government; let us see whether it is delivered. For today, I will lend my vote to Deputy Micheál Martin in the interests of forming what is the only viable option for government right now, and I will play a constructive role in holding that Government to account.