I am struck almost dumb with admiration for the TDs on the left for their self-sacrifice, humility and basic decency.
Because they have all said that they won’t take the latest pay rise – that’s the one which will bring TD salaries above €96,000 a year.
No. They’re going to offer it up – not back to the state, mind, where it might be put to good use.
They’re offering it up to themselves.
Yep. They’re going to take the average industrial wage and donate the rest to campaigns. Like the ones to get them elected and all those pamphlets you get through the letter box and the posters you see at election time and so on.
How they are going manage on €39,000 a year is a source of wonder though you mightn’t be wondering if you’re a pensioner.
Of course, the answer is, they won’t have to.
Because apart from having free offices, free parking, help to kit out constituency offices, funding to pay staff and so on. There’s more.
Here’s a little list of what some of our wonderful lefties claimed last year in Travel and Accomodation Allowances (TAA) and Public Representation Allowances. (PRA)
Gerry, who claimed €1m in expenses from Westminster when he wasn’t taking his seat there: €49,015. Really. Well, as Pee Flynn might say, running a house and a holiday home isn’t easy Gay. Try it sometime!
Rich Boy Barrett? Just the €29,350 – and of course the odd car service.
Ruth Coppinger claimed €26,488 – she paid back a little bit from the previous year.
Pearse Doherty comes all the way from Donegal and so got €52,064.65, (Wonder what the 65c was for)
Mary Lou got the basic €29,350.
And Paul Murphy €28,860 because he had a few bob to pay back too.
Clare Daly got 29,346.96 and her mate Mick Wallace the standard €29,350.
I could go on and on, but I’ll stop with the Healy Raes who I know aren’t lefties but, well, they’re worth a mention.
Danny and Michael both got €53,745
So why am I not giving out about the others? Well, they’re not exactly socialist now are they? They’ll take what they can get.
So even ministers up to and including Leo took €16,000 on top of their salaries with the exception of Michael Ring who took just €7,200.
The cost of TD expenses and allowances came to €7m. That’s on top of salaries.
So how many TDs, from left right or centre stood up in the Dáil with a proposal to slash these payments?
Exactly the same number as took no expenses at all.
Not a one.
Sure, it’s a hard job.
You’ll find more at https://www.oireachtas.ie/en/members/salaries-and-allowances/