TD Joe Higgins says Queen should "pay bed and breakfast" for visit
After Taoiseach Enda Kenny today revealed that the cost of next month's Royal Family visit is unknown, TD Joe Higgins quipped that the British Queen should foot her B&B bill.
Higgins remarks came during today's Dáil session, as the Socialist TD pointed out that Irish taxpayers should not have to pay for Queen Elizabeth II and US President Barack Obama's visits next month.
"In view of the fact that the Royal Family of Britain is one of the wealthiest families in the world and this country is almost sleeping rough, so to speak, figuratively, would you ask the Queen if she might make a contribution towards her own bed and breakfast costs to assist the unfortunate taxpayers, and go easier on them?" Mr Higgins asked Taoiseach Kenny.
Higgins ire was also directed towards the costly nature of US President Barack Obama's May visit, as the TD remarked, "Isn't it a bit rich really that the Irish taxpayer, as well as bailing out European speculators, must now make a contribution to the re-election campaign of the United States' president?"
Gardai have already been told that any leave they had booked between 16 and 25 May has been cut due to the massive security operation involved for both visits. The British Queen is set to arrive from May 17-19, while Barack Obama will touch down at an undetermined date, believed to be May 23.