Wednesday, 13 November 2013
Oireachtas (Ministerial and Parliamentary Offices) (Amendment) Bill 2013: Committee Stage
This is not being repetitive. I am tired of all the bureaucratic measures and the fact that we are showing the public that we do not trust ourselves. The point I made earlier which I will repeat because it is significant and on which the Minister appeared to agree with me was that if one were to return money honourably, the newspapers would pick up on this and declare that one had been overpaid and had to return the money. We will never satisfy the media. The only way to remedy the matter is to abolish the whole damn lot and give us a rate for the job.
My colleagues in this House are not required to resign if they are expelled from their parties and they were expelled. I know it is said they excluded themselves, but that is a Jesuitical construct, similar to Roman Catholics not being able to take communion and excommunicating themselves if they believe this, that or the other. I have always thought that is hogwash in the Roman Catholic Church and also believe it is hogwash in political parties and the proof of the pudding is in the fact that they do not have to resign. If they are kicked out of a party, they do not have to resign and can continue as Members of this House claim benefits accruing to them as Members. If they want to kick them back to the Government, more power to them. I admire them for doing so, but I do not think the Government has the right to hold on to them.