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Monday 2 October 2023 Dublin: 11°C
# every little hurts
Eamon Gilmore admits he didn't pay attention to the cuts in THAT ad
In his new book, the former tánaiste says he paid a high price for the infamous ‘Every Little Hurts’ ad.

every little hurts

EAMON GILMORE HAS revealed that he paid little attention to the details of an infamous Labour campaign ad that has done considerable damage to the party in recent years.

The ‘Every Little Hurts’ ad, which ran in some newspapers in the final days of the campaign, warned of several budget measures that would be introduced if Fine Gael was allowed to govern alone.

However many of the measures Labour warned about ended up being implemented by the coalition in its first three budgets.

Now the former tánaiste has admitted in his new book, Inside the Room: The Untold Story of Ireland’s Crisis Government, that his failure to pay attention to the detail of ad was a mistake that he later paid a “very high price” for.

Gilmore says the ad was designed to be a “game-changing communication” in the final days of the 2011 general election campaign that would be “catchy and controversial”.

Coalition Talks Sasko Lazarov / Photocall Ireland Sasko Lazarov / Photocall Ireland / Photocall Ireland

The idea was to warn against a single-party Fine Gael government which favoured more spending cuts than tax rises.

Gilmore, who signed off on the ad after seeing the final version on his tablet, writes: “The concept was good, and I felt the ads would get attention and could help change the outcome of the election. (They were certainly controversial, as evidenced by Tesco strongly objecting to them.)

Unfortunately I paid little attention to the detailed cuts which the ads mentioned and this was a mistake for which I would pay a very high price later.

He writes that the mistake was compounded further when those specific cuts were not “weeded out” in the negotiations on the programme for government.

The former Labour leader writes that the idea’s conception was spearheaded by advisor Mark Garrett and his team, with the party keen to focus on Fine Gael’s preference for expenditure cuts over tax increases and the damaging impact of this.

“Fine Gael had hammered us in the media on taxation policy,” he writes.

The ad has been used by Labour’s opponents repeatedly in recent years. Labour TD John Lyons told us last year that the ad had “haunted” the party:

Video / YouTube

We’ll be bringing you more from Eamon Gilmore’s new book in the coming days 

Read: ‘I remember getting that Every Little Hurts leaflet and not using it’

Read: Labour TD: That Tesco ad has haunted us

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