"TIME FOR CHANGE" - MARY LOU MCDONALD
It may be fall outside, but it seems like springtime for Sinn Féin. Riding high in the polls there was a positive and upbeat feel to the Sinn Féin Ard Fheis in Dublin.
Proposals to address the housing and health care crisis were passed. Planning for Irish Unity was center stage. This was Sinn Féin laying out its stall to lead governments in Dublin and Belfast. An all Ireland government in waiting.
While unionist party leaders have refused to confirm whether they would serve in government in the North if Sinn Féin was the First Minister, the Sinn Féin President Mary Lou McDonald was unequivocal.
“If Sinn Féin emerges as the largest party, we will nominate Michelle O’Neill as First Minister. The days of ‘Fenians need not apply’ are over”.
The Sinn Féin President led out the party’s vision to lead a government in Dublin. A government that would put workers and families first.
She said, “Sinn Féin will deliver that government for the people. We want to lead that government. I want to lead as Taoiseach if you give us the chance.”
Echoing back to previous generations, it’s clear that the movement for change is being driven by people across Ireland.
The Sinn Féin President said, “From the Easter Rising to Armagh Gaol and the H-Blocks of Long Kesh, Republicans have led heroically, selflessly in pursuit of the dream of freedom.
Ordinary people creating extraordinary change.”
Mary Lou McDonald unveiled proposals for a series of people assemblies on a united Ireland. This will include the US and Canada.
“It is time for Irish Unity. Planning and preparation must start now. Sinn Féin will commence a people's conversation from January. We want to hear from everybody,” she said.
Adding, “The onus is on the Irish government to prepare for referendums and reunification. That is what a Sinn Féin government will do.”
Sinn Féin is staking its claim to government and to delivering fundamental change and Irish Unity.
With the continued support of the US, Sinn Féin will be in government and we will see a new and united Ireland.