Budget 2024

Michael Brennan: Big-spending coalition basks in €14bn budget but fears it’ll all be for nothing

The general verdict from government backbenchers was positive, given the level of spending and tax cuts in the €14 billion budget package

Michael McGrath, Fianna Fáil's Minister for Finance and Pascal Donoghue, Fine Gael’s Minister for Public Expenditure at Government buildings. Picture: Norma Burke.

It was Sean Fleming, the Fianna Fáil Minister of State, who got a standing ovation going for Finance Minister Michael McGrath’s first budget.

The Laois-Offaly TD was first on his feet, applauding the end to McGrath’s 45-minute speech and looking around at his colleagues to encourage them to get up too.

Fianna Fáil TDs railIed to support the Finance Minister and eventually Fine Gael and Green Party TDs had to follow suit in giving him ...