Wednesday 18 October 2017

Don't get too cocky, Martin tells FF

Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin Picture: Arthur Carron
Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin Picture: Arthur Carron
Niall O'Connor

Niall O'Connor

Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin is warning his TDs not to become complacent following his party's surge in the latest opinion poll.

The IPSOS/MRBI poll, which gives the party a nine-point lead over Fine Gael, has led to suggestions among Fianna Fáil TDs that Micheál Martin will withdraw support for the Government after the October Budget.

One senior Fianna Fáil deputy said the party should cause an election "sooner rather than later" in order to make it difficult for Fine Gael to replace Enda Kenny as leader.

However, others expressed fears that the party would be "punished" if it pulled the plug prematurely on the minority government.

But privately, Mr Martin has warned his TDs to remain "focused" and not to become complacent.

"He has made the point that this is just one poll and we can't get ahead of ourselves," a source told the Irish Independent.

Kildare North Fianna Fáil TD James Lawless said his party was determined to be "constructive" in opposition.

"We're getting stuck in and not shouting from the sidelines, looking to bring down the Government," Mr Lawless told Independent.ie's political podcast 'The Floating Voter'.

As to when Fianna Fáil might take advantage of this poll-topping performance and bring down the minority Government, Mr Lawless joked: "When we get 100pc for five polls in a row, maybe we'll go to the people then."

Mr Lawless raised the fact that Mr Martin is easily the most popular leader in the country, according to the poll for the 'Irish Times'.

He added: "I think certainly he was more statesman-like than the Taoiseach has been in the last week or two or the last year or two."

Irish Independent

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