Tuesday 21 October 2014

Varadkar and Martin rule out coalition with Sinn Fein

Lise Hand and Eilish O'Regan

Published 23/07/2014 | 02:30

Minister for Health Leo Varadkar TD, Mary Lou McDonald TD and Fianna Fail leader Micheál Martin TD, during their visit to the MacGill Summer School.
Minister for Health Leo Varadkar TD, Mary Lou McDonald TD and Fianna Fail leader Micheál Martin TD, during their visit to the MacGill Summer School.

HEALTH Minister Leo Varadkar and Fianna Fail leader Micheal Martin both ruled out coalition with Sinn Fein after the next general election.

Answering questions on potential government partners during a session at the MacGill Summer School, Mr Varadkar said he could not "envisage a Coalition between Fine Gael and Sinn Féin," as he cited the party's past, as well as its current policies.

Mr Martin was even more definitive. "I've said we're not going into power with Sinn Féin," he said.

However both men were less clear-cut on the subject of a Fine Gael/Fianna Fail coalition, with the Health Minister joking he had checked the bookies odds on his mobile and they were 5/4 on such a pairing.

In response, Sinn Fein's Mary Lou suggested the two men from Fine Gael and Fianna Fail "kiss and make up" as "the Civil War is over".

Earlier, Mr Varadkar launched a blistering attack on Sinn Fein, blasting the party not trusting the Irish people.

Speaking before delivering an address at MacGill Summer School, he said: "Sinn Fein fundamentally doesn't trust the Irish people, because they won't tell them the truth about their past and nor will they be consistent about their policies that they preach north and south, and I don't really think that the public can trust Sinn Fein to be in government until Sinn Fein starts telling the truth," he said.

The Health Minister said that he didn't believe the party leader Gerry Adams claim that he was never a member of the IRA.

"I don't believe it and I don't think anyone else does quite frankly but what we've all decided to do is just to turn a blind eye to it for the sake of peace on the island and maybe that's not the wrong thing to do," he said. "But I do think the time has come for them to have enough trust in the people to start telling us the truth about all that".

Ms McDonald said that Mr Adams had dealt with the issue "time and time again", adding "the only person who can answer that question is Gerry - I can't answer on his behalf."

Minister Varadkar also criticised Fianna Fail and warned against the electorate returning the party to power in the next general election. "

I think people will have to think long and hard about handing the keys back to the party that crashed the car," he said.

Irish Independent

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