Fianna Fáil accuses Hayes of 'borrowing Phil Hogan's clothes'
Fianna Fáil has accused Brian Hayes of "borrowing the clothes of Phil Hogan" after Fine Gael's director of elections described the party as "still the enemy".
Mr Hayes told yesterday's Irish Independent that Fianna Fáil was "clueless" on the economy and "flirting" with Sinn Féin about the prospect of a coalition government.
He also said Micheál Martin's party was "incompetent" and Fianna Fáil supporters who 'lent' their vote to Enda Kenny in 2011 should stick with him for another five years.
In response, Fianna Fáil's Justice spokesman Niall Collins said the Dublin MEP was displaying a sense of arrogance.
"We all know Brian Hayes is over in Brussels. He's probably spending too much time with Phil Hogan because he is taking to adopting some of the quotes of Phil Hogan at the previous election," Mr Collins said.
"I think he is really out of touch in terms of the mood of this country and in terms of what he is saying in the article...first of all is hugely arrogant, the way he is addressing the public.
"The public and Fianna Fáil voters who switched the last time, it is a case of 'fool me once shame on you, fool me twice shame on me'.
"Genuine Fianna Fáil supporters and people who are switching back to us aren't going to be fooled by Brian Hayes on this occasion borrowing the clothes of Phil Hogan."
Mr Collins said that while Fine Gael might take "comfort" from a weekend poll that put them on 31pc, "from far leafy suburbs of Brussels, he should look at the other data, because there are about 66pc, two-thirds of the public, dissatisfied with the Government".
Fianna Fáil Senator Darragh O'Brien added: "He believes a lot of what he says himself. The problem that Brian has is very few people believe what he says."
Mr Hayes said he believed Fine Gael was on course to reach about 35pc on polling day and be returned to government with the Labour Party.