Conway says she does not regret move to oust Gilmore
Published 27/06/2014 | 02:30
LABOUR TD Ciara Conway has insisted that she did not "frog-march" outgoing leader Eamon Gilmore into making his decision to stand down.
Ms Conway, who is vying for the deputy leadership of the party, was forced to defend her role in the plot to remove Mr Gilmore as leader.
Ms Conway was a member of the gang-of-eight, backed by junior minister Alex White, who devised a motion of no confidence in Mr Gilmore last month.
It was never debated because Mr Gilmore quit before it was tabled at the parliamentary party meeting.
She insisted that she did not "frogmarch anybody" into resigning, adding: "I'm sorry for the way it happened, but I stand over what I did."
Ms Conway was speaking at the final Labour leadership hustings.
Meanwhile, Social Protection Minister Joan Burton has admitted that promises of a new type of politics, made when Labour entered government in 2011, now appear "hollow".
Ms Burton is competing against Mr White for the position of leader.
"I understand how frustrated you feel that the promise of new politics in 2011 has come to look hollow, despite the superb work Brendan Howlin has done on lobbyists and whistle-blowers, to name just two areas," Ms Burton said.
Speaking before the hustings, Mr White said he was "confident" of beating Ms Burton in the leadership battle.
But he refused to say which cabinet position he would seek if he was elected leader.
The party's four candidates for the deputy leadership position – Alan Kelly, Michael McCarthy, Sean Sherlock and Ciara Conway – also laid out their stalls.
The new leader and deputy leader will be formally announced by the party on July 4.