Wednesday 26 April 2017

Pressure mounts on Kenny as new poll shows Fine Gael haemorrhaging voters

Mr Kenny will have to weigh up not just what is in the best interests of him and his party, but primarily the country. Image: Maxwell Photography
Mr Kenny will have to weigh up not just what is in the best interests of him and his party, but primarily the country. Image: Maxwell Photography
Philip Ryan

Philip Ryan

PRESSURE on Enda Kenny to step down as leader of Fine Gael is set to intensify this weekend as the first Sunday Independent/Kantar Millward Brown opinion poll of the year shows the party is haemorrhaging voters.

Fine Gael has plummeted four points to 25pc, while Fianna Fail has jumped six points to 33pc. This is the highest rating Fianna Fail has recorded in this poll since 2008.

The opinion polls also finds more than half (53pc) of voters believe Mr Kenny should resign as Fine Gael leader, while one in four (25pc) said he should remain in place.

The damaging poll result is likely to lead to fresh calls for Mr Kenny to name his departure date as Social Protection Minister Leo Varadkar ramped up pressure on the Fine Gael leader to resign.

In tomorrow’s Sunday Independent dramatic new poll findings will reveal who is leading the leadership race between Mr Varadkar and his closest rival Housing Minister Simon Coveney.

Meanwhile, The state of the other parties are Sinn Fein unchanged at 20pc, the Labour Party down two points to 6pc, the Independent Alliance unchanged at 5pc, the Anti-Austerity Alliance-People Before Profit up one to 3pc and Social Democrats up one to 2pc. Independent candidates are down two 4pc.

Satisfaction in the Government has dropped four points to just 27pc while dissatisfaction has increased two points to 64pc.  Mr Kenny’s personal satisfaction rating has dropped two points to 27pc, while Fianna Fail leader Micheal Martin’s rating has increased a point to 44pc. Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams is on 30pc and Labour Party leader Brendan Howlin is on 26pc.

Fianna Fail is the least toxic of the main political parties with one-in-five (21pc) people saying they would never vote for the party. Almost a third (32pc) of all people surveyed said they would never vote for Fine Gael and 36pc said they would not vote for Sinn Fein.

The poll consisted of 960 face-to-face interviews at 64 sampling points around the country. The survey was conducted between February 6th and 16th.

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