Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams said today that talks about tackling the Budget deficit should include those who do not agree with the Government.
Mr Cowen invited Fine Gael and Labour to the discussions, but not Sinn Féin.
Mr Adams said: “If the Taoiseach is serious about acting in the national interest, there must be an honest assessment of all the options available to tackle the economic and fiscal crisis.
“The Taoiseach’s decision to exclude Sinn Féin from discussions because the party has a different opinion is reprehensible.”
The party president said Sinn Féin has proposals to cut the deficit but claimed they would not rely on savage cutbacks to do so.
Mr Cowen said Sinn Féin did not support the need to slash the deficit to 3% of GDP by 2014.
“Clearly if that’s their position, there is no basis upon which we can find a common conclusion for a solution to a problem,” the Taoiseach said.