Of course there were excesses in the Ceann Comhairle’s spending which could not be justified and his position obviously became untenable.
But it sticks in my craw to see the self-righteousness of Sinn Féin — a party whose military wing cost this State many more millions than any of our democratic politicians will ever see because of the amount of money which had to be spent on patrolling the Border by our gardaí and army over the years.
In addition, Sinn Féin's “friends” in the IRA stole many millions from banks and post offices in the name of Irish Republicanism, in some cases taking the lives of gardaí in the process.
Money is put in its rightful context when you take into account the infinitely more serious human toll which the political wing of Sinn Fein exacted through their prolonged campaign of murder and mayhem lasting more than three decades. Sinn Fein are the ones that keep trotting out their mantra of “justice and equality” in Northern Ireland and insist on delivering lectures down here on how to behave properly in public life.
John O’Donoghue was undoubtedly way out of order in relation to his expenses but on the scale of wrongs committed by Sinn Féin’s fellow-travellers in the IRA then his “crime” may not be so bad after all.
So while nobody could condone the claiming of excessive expenses, we do need to have a sense of perspective in all of this.
Give me rectitude and probity in public life but please spare me the hypocrisy of Sinn Féin which appears to know no bounds.