Translate movements of people-power into genuine Left Dail grouping

Powerful alternative to inequality, injustices and cronyism of discredited political establishment

Launching the Anti-Austerity Alliance – People Before Profit general election campaign, Cllr Michael O’Brien, a candidate in Dublin Bay North, declared: “The last year and a half has seen two massive movements of people-power – the movement against the water charges, which has seen hundreds of thousands on the street and a boycott of 50% being maintained, and the movement for marriage equality. Those movements have already undermined the political establishment and illustrated the power of the 99% when organised. Now, we are asking people to continue that political revolution at the ballot box on 26 February. We are presenting the largest electoral challenge by the Left in the history of the state. At a minimum, we aim to make history by achieving at least seven seats and establishing for the first time in Dail Eireann a principled Left group. It, combined with the ongoing movements outside the Dail, will be a powerful force fighting in the interests of the 99%.”

election 2016bRichard Boyd-Barrett TD, for Dun Laoghaire, commented: “Just as they did before the last election, Fine Gael and Labour are trying to bamboozle the public with election promises they will not keep. But after five years of broken promises on property tax, water charges, protecting public services and the vulnerable, eliminating homelessness, student fees and many more, this avalanche of pre-election pledges are without a shred of credibility. The latest fiction from a government that spent five years attacking services and incomes is that it’s all going to be ok in the next five years because of something called “fiscal space” – it’s a bad joke really. The government are also peddling a myth of stability. This is an insult to those who are homeless, to patients on hospital trolleys and waiting lists, to low-paid workers and those on zero hour contracts. In contrast to the government’s latest fiction about “fiscal space”, our policy commitments on funding, services, jobs and lifting the burden of austerity are based on identifiable sources of revenue – namely corporate profits, financial trading, wealth, super-high incomes, and the targeted investment that could result from a publicly owned not-for profit banking system. The real choice in this election is to vote Left for real equality and fairness or return to the injustice, cronyism and broken promises of discredited political establishment.”

aaapbpRuth Coppinger, TD for Dublin West, remarked: “A striking feature in this election is the widespread sense of betrayal by the Labour Party. In the 2011 election they tried to tell people that they would take the hard edge off Fine Gael’s policies with the Tesco ad. But instead they fell in line with them and broke every promise they made which has contributed to the immense housing and homeless crisis and the construction of a low pay, precarious workforce. The repeat of the Tesco ad farce is already seen with Joan Burton promising free GP care for all in the next government, while the Fine Gael Minister for Health says it is impossible. Joan Burton declared at the Labour Party conference that ‘A good start is half the work. So let’s complete the journey.’ We say that working class people made a good start of finishing off the Labour Party in the last local elections. We say to them, finish off the Labour Party now and replace them with a principled movement of the left that won’t sell people out.”

Cllr John Lyons, a candidate in Dublin Bay North, said: “The Anti-Austerity Alliance – People Before Profit are campaigning for a society based on genuine equality and solidarity . Currently we have a society that is totally geared towards the 1% at the expense of the 99%. This inequality has been reinforced by the policies of Fine Gael, Labour and, before them, Fianna Fail and the Greens. We are offering the people a serious and fundamental alternative in General Election 2016. We need to scrap the two tier health service and the shambles that is the HSE and replace it with a National Health Service that is free at the point of use which all citizens can access. We need to make social and affordable housing a priority. This government has built fewer social and council houses than any other and we are seeing the results of this in the crisis of homelessness that has gone out of control under this government. We are calling for real investment in social and affordable housing, including rent controls. We also must repeal the Eighth Amendment which effectively classes women as second class citizens and end religious discrimination in schools. No child should be refused entry to their school of choice because they are not part of a certain religion or baptised. If you want a progressive society which places equality and fairness at its core and if you want an alternative to the elitism and cronyism of the Fine Gael/Labour government then vote for the Anti- Austerity Alliance- People Before Profit candidates in your constituency in General Election 2016.”