Saturday 1 October 2016

Parties nominate their leaders to be the next Taoiseach

Cormac McQuinn, Political Correspondent

Published 10/03/2016 | 15:09

Enda Kenny Photo:Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images
Enda Kenny Photo:Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images

FINE Gael leader Enda Kenny has been nominated to return to office as Taoiseach by his party's youngest TD Noel Rock.

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The Dáil is this afternoon hearing the nominations for Taosieach from Fine Gael, Fianna Fáil, Sinn Féin and AAA-PBP.

Mayo deputy Lisa Chambers nominated Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin as Taioiseach.

Deputy Rock (28) said he was putting Mr Kenny's name forward so that Mr Kenny can "continue his work for the next five years".

"I may be new to this party but I know the difference the Taoiseach has made to the country," Mr Rock continued citing the marriage equality referendum and bringing Ireland back from "the financial abyss".

"I am proud that this Taoiseach has always put the country first and I'm confident he will always out the country first," Mr Rock said.

He brought our economy and our country back as many people had written us off.

The nomination was seconded by Deputy Catherine Byrne.

Ms Chambers said that "Micheál Martin is very well qualified to under-take the duties of office of Taoiseach."

She said that in nominating Mr Martin, "Fianna Fáil is making clear that it is opting for a change in government because that is what tho people voted for."

His nomination was seconded by Thomas Byrne TD.

Sinn Féin's Mary Lou McDonald put her party leader Gerry Adams's name forward for Taosieach.

She said Mr Adams is the "leader of the largest all-island political party", was one of the "architects of the Peace Process".

Mr Adams's Louth colleague Imelda Munster seconded the nomination.

AAA-PBP Ruth Coppinger TD nominated Dun Laoghaire Deputy Richard Boyd Barrett as that group's nominee.

She quoted James Connolly from a hundred years ago saying: "The day has passed for patching up the capitalist system. It must go"

"We will not vote for the identical twin candidates" of the parties that "imposed austerity", referring to Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil.

Deputy Coppinger added that they would also not vote for Mr Adams.

Bríd Smith TD seconded the nomination.

Richard Boyd-Barrett said he would be crazy to “miss the opportunity” to be nominated for Taoiseach.

The Anti-Austerity Alliance TD admitted it’s unlikely anyone would ever be elected to the position today as government-forming negotiations continue.

He said being nominated by party colleague Ruth Coppinger was part of “his obligation to those who voted for him.”

This means that they will not be supporting Sinn Féín’s (the largest group of ‘Right2Change’ TDs) Gerry Adams nomination for Taoiseach.

Mr Boyd-Barrett pointed out that nobody would be elected to the position anyway.

 “At this stage nobody has the numbers to form a Government on the left. So we will continue to work with others on the left,” he said at a water charges protest outside Leinster House.

“But given what is happening in the Dái, there isn’t going to be a result, it would be crazy to miss the opportunity to set out a left vision.”

Meanwhile Mick Barry, first-time TD for AAA ,said that he called on people  to cancel their bills with Irish Water.

“Every single household should refuse to pay a water bill,” Mr Barry said.

“If you have been bullied and harassed, we are holding out the hand to us and say ‘join us.’”

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