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Numerous U-turns from Sinn Féin prove they cannot be trusted with your vote – Doherty

1st June 2024 - Regina Doherty

Constant U-turns from Sinn Féin on critical matters like housing and the economy prove they cannot be trusted with your vote on polling day, a Fine Gael European candidate has said.

Senator Regina Doherty today said Sinn Féin operate in a credibility vacuum as demonstrated by their constant shifting of position on a range of policies.

“Their approach which would cause untold damage to our country if the party were in office,” she said.

“Recently, we have seen Sinn Féin either soften its radical stance on certain issues, abandon policies altogether, or more recently agree, perform completely shameless U-turns and agree with Government on its economic approach in a bid to woo voters ahead of the upcoming local, European and mayoral elections,” Senator Doherty said.

“They say they are the party of change, but the only change you would see with a Sinn Féin government is less change in your pocket as there would be fewer jobs, less investment, lower incomes and higher unemployment.

“The upcoming elections are more important than ever before, and the public has a clear choice of voting for Fine Gael, which has a proven track record of progress and will bring Ireland forward with new leadership – or voting for Sinn Féin, a party that cannot be trusted and would set the country back decades.

“Sinn Féin has undergone more reinventions than Madonna in a desperate attempt to score political points rather than working for the common good.

“On everything from migration, to pensions, to housing, there is a myriad of policy U-turns performed by Sinn Féin, with contradicting positions and inconsistences ramping up in recent months as it eyes up the electorate,” Senator Doherty said.

These U-turns include:

Open borders:

Sinn Féin leader Mary Lou McDonald Mary Lou McDonald said in February 2024 that ‘Ireland doesn’t have open borders in a discussion migration. [i]

In March 2022 the State should extend the same support to ‘all refugees and to everyone seeking international protection[ii].’

Despite this, the party changed their position with Donnchadh O’Laoghaire saying in April this year that Sinn Féin is opposed to open borders.”[iii]

Pension auto enrolment:

On pensions, in September 2021, Mary Lou McDonald said she supported the pension auto enrolment scheme[iv].

But fast forward three years later to April 2024 and the party yet again abandoned workers and voted against the measure in the Dáil.[v] 


Sinn Féin are opposed to the Croí Cónaithe scheme. They want to scrap it as outlined in their 2022 document ahead of the Budget[vi].

Yet in the same year and just weeks after the Budget, Sinn Féin Deputy Claire Kerrane called for the scheme to be fast tracked and to ensure finance was available to meet demand[vii]. 

Sacking Civil Servants

In October 2022, Sinn Féin housing spokesperson Eoin Ó’Broin said that chief economist at the Department of Finance, John McCarthy, should be fired because of advice given to Government.[viii]

Yet weeks later and following widespread criticism of the comments, Deputy Ó’Broin apologised for the remarks[ix].

Bobby Storey funeral:

In May 2020, during the height of the pandemic, Sinn Féin’s leadership attended the funeral of IRA member Bobby Storey. After the funeral, Sinn Féin’s leader in the North Michelle O’Neill refused to apologise for attending ‘the funeral of my friend[x].’

Fast forward to May 2024, and in a remarkable u-turn, Michelle O’Neill, at the Covid inquiry, finally apologised to families who were unable to properly mourn their loved ones at the time due to pandemic restrictions[xi]. 

Courting Big Business:

In a marked departure from long held Sinn Féin rhetoric, finance spokesperson Pearse Doherty told a briefing with Davy stockbrokers in May 2024 that his party fully endorses the Government’s approach when it comes to windfall corporate tax receipts and believes the establishment of a sovereign wealth fund/infrastructure fund is a sensible strategy.[xii]

Yet in the same month, Pearse and his colleagues voted against the Future Ireland Fund, aimed at helping Governments with future spending pressures including ageing, climate and other fiscal and economic challenges[xiii].

Rerunning referendums

Sinn Féin campaigned for two Yes votes in the family and care referendums that took place in March 2024.

In February, Deputy McDonald said the party would rerun both referendums if the party enters Government after the next General Election. [xiv]

But just after the referendum, Cavan-Monaghan TD Matt Carthy confirmed the party would not revisit the referendums.[xv]


In their 2020 general election manifesto, Sinn Féin pledged to leave Pesco and the Partnership for Peace, which enables military co-operation between EU member states[xvi].

But in another glaring u-turn in May 2023, Matt Carthy, party spokesperson on Foreign Affairs & Defence, would not withdraw Irish forces from pre-committed operations and exercises if the party was in Government.[xvii] 

Nature Restoration Law:

On February 27th last, Sinn Féin Senator Lynn Boylan welcomed the European Parliament voting in favour of the Nature Restoration Law as “great news”.[xviii]

However in Brussels, her party’s sole MEP Chris McManus had a completely different position and voted against the legislation.

Senator Doherty said: “At a time when we need unity and common sense, Sinn Féin would sow division and chaos. The above examples are clear evidence of this.

“On polling day, I believe that voters will see through Sinn Féin’s duplicitousness at presenting themselves as a conventional, progressive party, when the simple truth is they are anything but.”                                                                                                                            


[i] Mary Lou McDonald – Party Leader Interviews – This Week (

[ii] Government Response to Situation in Ukraine: Statements – Dáil Éireann (33rd Dáil) – Wednesday, 30 Mar 2022 – Houses of the Oireachtas

[iii] We need a fair, efficient, and enforced immigration system – Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire TD | Sinn Féin opposes open borders and advocates for a fair, efficient, and enforced immigration system that respects the human rights of those fleeing… | By Sinn Féin IrelandFacebook | Facebook

[iv] Sinn Féin say investment in public medicine reduce reliance on private health facilities | Morning Ireland – RTÉ Radio 1 (


[vi] Delivering_Affordable_Homes.pdf (


[viii] – Digital Newspaper & Magazine Subscriptions

[ix] Sinn Féin’s Ó Broin apologises to civil servant he said should be sacked – The Irish Times

[x] Michelle O’Neill: ‘I will never apologise for attending the funeral of my friend’ – Belfast Live

[xi] Northern Ireland First Minister Michelle O’Neill apologises for going to ex-IRA member’s funeral during COVID | Politics News | Sky News

[xii] WeTransfer – Send Large Files & Share Photos Online – Up to 2GB Free

[xiii] Future Ireland Fund and Infrastructure, Climate and Nature Fund Bill 2024: Report and Final Stages – Dáil Éireann (33rd Dáil) – Wednesday, 15 May 2024 – Tithe an Oireachtais (

[xiv] Sinn Féin promises to re-run referendums on care and family if they fail, should it be returned to government – The Irish Times

[xv] Sinn Féin ‘will not re-run referendums’ if elected to next Government  | Newstalk

[xvi] Giving_Workers_and_Families_a_Break_-_A_Manifesto_for_Change.pdf (

[xvii] Neutrality gives Ireland its “moral authority” in the world – Matt Carthy TD​ – Sinn Féin (



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