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Socialist Challenge in Irish Election
THE SOCIALIST Party (SP), Ireland, is contesting five seats in the forthcoming general election to be held on 17 May.
The SP is confident of retaining its seat in Dublin West, held by Joe Higgins from the last general election in 1997. SP members are hoping that they can increase their representation in the Dail (Parliament) this time with the election of SP councillor Clare Daly in the Dublin North constituency.
Also standing for the SP are Lisa Maher in Dublin South, Mick Murphy in Dublin South West and Mick Barry in Cork North Central.
During the last five years the Fianna Fail/Progressive Democrats coalition government lead by Taoiseach (Prime Minister) Bertie Ahern has presided over a series of financial and political scandals.
Joe Higgins has used his position in the Dail to expose the corruption of the political establishment that enabled top businessmen to evade taxation while the hated 'bin tax' was imposed on the working class.
Recently, Clare Daly and Joe Higgins won a high court injunction against Fingal County Council which forces the council to collect all refuse bins, regardless of whether the newly introduced bin tax is paid or not. Previously the council had said it wouldn't collect any bin from non-payers.
The government which has enjoyed rising tax revenues from an unsustainable economic boom, has passed on these benefits of the 'Tiger Economy' to the rich.
And it has continued to assist its wealthy speculator friends to make millions in profits from housing while 140,000 working class people wait in vain on public housing lists.
But workers have been fighting back against this government of the rich. Teachers and health workers have taken action over pay and conditions; Aer Lingus workers have fought privatisation; low paid Aldi workers have fought for union rights. The Socialist Party has assisted these workers in their struggles.
The government has suffered defeats in referendums over ratifying the Nice Treaty, and over abortion rights. Voters can make it three in a row by kicking out the government and voting for the Socialist Party.
If you can assist the Irish SP's general election campaign, phone 020 8988 8777.
Subscribe to Voice, Paper of the Socialist Party. 12 months for 15 Euros. Send to Socialist Party, PO Box 3434, Dublin 8.
In The Socialist 3 May 2002: