The 14 TDs threatening to boycott the €100 household charge would bring the Oireachtas “down a very dangerous road for our democracy,” Minister for the Environment Phil Hogan has warned.
Hitting out at the group who are refusing to pay the charge, Mr Hogan described their actions as irresponsible and inappropriate.
Socialist Party duo Clare Daly and Joe Higgins, along with Richard Boyd Barrett and Joan Collins of People Before Profit and independents Seamus Healy, Thomas Pringle, Mick Wallace, Luke ‘Ming’ Flanagan and John Halligan are all refusing to pay the charge.
They have gained support from five of Sinn Féin’s 14 TDs, led by spokesperson for housing and justice, Aengus Ó Snodaigh. Sinn Féin, however, insist they are not calling for a boycott but and are “not telling people what to do” but did admit that the five in question would not be paying it.
Commenting on the TDs opposing the charge, Minister Hogan said: “I think those TDs should pull back from this irresponsible activity where they are advocating, as lawmakers, that Irish people break the law. It is a very dangerous road for our democracy.”
Nine of the TDs held a press conference yesterday, at which they insisted they would go to jail rather than pay the charge.
Mr Hogan said the threat to boycott the charge, was a “cynical and emotive public relations stunt”.