Proceedings in Leinster House were briefly suspended this morning, after Micheál Martin launched an attack on the ‘voodoo economics’ policies of Sinn Féin.
“Are ya gonna do as big a u-turn, as the man who coined that phrase?” a clearly irritated Mary Lou McDonald snapped.
Taken by surprise, the Fianna Fáil leader tried to brazen it out, while McDonald went on the offensive.
“Bush Snr coined the phrase ‘voodoo economics’,” she said, “when he attacked Ronald Reagan’s ‘supply side’ policies”.
“Voo, voo…” stuttered a suddenly unsettled looking Micheál.
“But the moment he became Reagan’s vice-presidential candidate, he did a major u-turn and embraced them?”
“…economics,” Martin repeated.
“If I were you, I’d get a good grip on the steering wheel before I go any farther,” she advised, “or instead of steering, you might end up like your predecessor. Being asked to walk?“
Behind her, SF TDs taunted Martin with cries of ‘you know you have to learn’ and ‘put ointment on that burn’ before settling down to a steady chant of ‘Sick burn! Sick burn!’
Leo Varadkar later said it was “a bit rich for the people behind the northern bank robbery, to be giving anyone lessons on economics”.