RENUA leader Leahy welcomes Varadkar's belated tax reform stance

Justin Kelly

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Justin Kelly

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John Leahy

Renua leader and Offaly County Councillor John Leahy

Offaly politician and RENUA leader John Leahy has said Leo Varadkar's tax reform conversion is "better late than never" as he gives a statement on the move from the likely Taoiseach. 

RENUA Ireland leader John Leahy has welcomed Leo Varadkar's "belated conversion to a modest degree of radicalism when it comes tax reform" in his party leaders' manifesto.

Mr Leahy said:

"RENUA Ireland has led the way in calling for a new politics which would serve the interests of people who get up, at whatever time, and go to work. As part of improving their lives, reducing the number of taxes we pay is a core RENUA Ireland value. We believe that the entry point on to the marginal rate of income tax must be increased and that no-one should pay more than 50% in income tax and social insurance. The current incredibly low entry point of the highest marginal rate is a strong disincentive to workers as well as damaging competitiveness of Irish business.”

“It has been difficult and somewhat lonely being the only low tax party in Irish politics. Fianna Fail, Sinn Fein, the Social Democrats, Shane Ross and his Independent Alliance, Labour, and most disappointingly of all, Fine Gael have, up to now, supported high taxes to pay for their pork barrel political projects," Leahy added.

"The belated conversion of Mr Varadkar and his party to RENUA Ireland values represents another chink in the wall of the Irish disease of high taxes and excessive spending. It can also only benefit our country as low taxation is the best route to full employment and a richer populace. It provides people with the most effective road map out of poverty and generational disadvantage."

Mr Leahy, however, also warned that RENUA Ireland "could be forgiven for viewing this new position with some suspicion."

He continued: "Belated conversions are not always genuine conversions. RENUA Ireland will on this, and on other proposals designed to lighten the load on the workers of this country, be holding Mr Varadkar’s political feet close to the fire."

"This after all is the man who sat silent as a church mouse through six budgets whilst the lives and conditions of working Mums and Dads were eviscerated. He has much to do before we are convinced by the aspirant Taoiseach’s modest and still vague proposals."

"RENUA has fully costed our proposals, and given a detailed timeframe for implementation, so it is a fair question to Leo, who has been auditioning for the last twelve months, to show us the figures. We want numbers and we want them quickly," the Offaly Councillor concluded.

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