Monday 24 April 2017

Meet the dashing doctor boyfriend supporting Leo Varadkar in his Fine Gael leadership bid

Matthew Barrett (left) and Leo Varadkar pictured on holidays
Matthew Barrett (left) and Leo Varadkar pictured on holidays
Leo Varadkar's partner Matthew Barrett on top of Croagh Patrick
Leo Varadkar at Electric Picnic in Stradbally, Co Laois in 2015.
Leo Varadkar's partner Dr Matthew Barrett
Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

Meet Dr Matt Barrett - the rock behind Leo Varadkar as he strives to become leader of Fine Gael.

Although the pair have been an item for the last 18 months, they have so far shunned the spotlight - although that could change should Mr Varadkar become Taoiseach.

Comment: Why Leo Varadkar having a boyfriend does matter  

The couple have holidayed together, met each other's families and even shared a joint birthday bash.

Leo Varadkar's partner Matthew Barrett on top of Croagh Patrick
Leo Varadkar's partner Matthew Barrett on top of Croagh Patrick

As chaos continues within the Government about Enda Kenny's resignation as Taoiseach, attention has turned to Mr Varadkar as a future leader.

As tensions rise, Mr Vardkar is seen to have a strong partner by his side.

Recently Mr Varadkar celebrated his 38th birthday party at Dublin hipster bar Hacienda with friends, family and his other half. Mr Varadkar represents a more modern politician having previously declared himself a fan of Blur and attends Electric Picnic every year.

Varadkar welcomed a host of guests including senior counsel and trustee of Fine Gael, Frank Callanan, his speech writer girlfriend, Bridget Hourican; FG legal advisor Jennifer Carroll MacNeill with her husband and Irish rugby guru Hugo MacNeill.

Leo Varadkar's partner Dr Matthew Barrett
Leo Varadkar's partner Dr Matthew Barrett

Other guests included comedian Oliver Callan, dance guru Eamon Farrell and artist husband Steve Mannion, politician turned PR Lucinda Creighton, Senator Catherine Noone and her pal, orthodontist Shona Leydon.  

Ministers Frances Fitzgerald, Simon Harris and Paschal Donohoe also accepted the invite.

The birthday duo were presented with a cake that had 'Happy Birthday Leo and Matt' written in icing.

The couple share a common interest in keeping fit and go on regular runs and hikes together.

Leo Varadkar at Electric Picnic in Stradbally, Co Laois in 2015.
Leo Varadkar at Electric Picnic in Stradbally, Co Laois in 2015.

Should Mr Varadkar become Taoiseach, Ireland would just the fourth country to ever have an openly gay head of government.

Iceland's Johanna Siguroardottir, Belgium's Elio Di Rupo and Luxembourg's Xavier Bettel are the only other openly gay people to lead a government.

Minister Simon Coveney with his daughter Beth (6) at Government Buildings. Photo: Arthur Carron
Minister Simon Coveney with his daughter Beth (6) at Government Buildings. Photo: Arthur Carron

Ireland became the first country in the world to legalise same-sex marriage by a public vote in 2015.

Minister Simon Coveney - seen as the other front runner for the leadership - has been married to wife Ruth since 2008.

Simon Coveney with his wife Ruth at the wedding. Photo: Gerry Mooney
Simon Coveney with his wife Ruth at the wedding. Photo: Gerry Mooney

The couple have three daughters together - Beth (6), Jessica (5) and Ruth (2).

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