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Sunday 23 July 2017

The results are in: Independent.ie readers select their preferred new Taoiseach

Minister Leo Varadkar and Minister Simon Coveney at the Fine Gael Hustings for the leadership of the party
Minister Leo Varadkar and Minister Simon Coveney at the Fine Gael Hustings for the leadership of the party
Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

As the leadership contest continues in Fine Gael, Independent.ie readers have had their say on who they wish to see as the new leader.

Thursday's hustings saw underdog Simon Coveney's campaign receive something of a boost, after his address was warmly received.

However, Social Protection Minister Leo Varadkar remains favourite to be elected party leader.

Now readers of Independent.ie have had their say and more than 8,000 unique votes were cast.

Simon Coveney emerged as the preferred option with 64pc of the vote.

However, Mr Coveney said today that he does not place much stall in opinion polls as the leadership battle is not a "personality contest".

Speaking to Shane Beatty on this morning's edition of Kildare Today on Kfm Radio, he discounted the view that his opponent is a sure-fire bet to be selected the next leader.

"This is still a real contest," he said.

Results of a reader poll on Independent.ie
Results of a reader poll on Independent.ie

The contest was about "values" and what Fine Gael politics looks like, he said adding that he and Mr Varadkar were quite siimilar.

"Many people who have committed one way or another may well think again," he said.

Readers may only cast one vote per device on Independent.ie

Minister Leo Varadkar and Minister Simon Coveney at the Fine Gael hustings
Minister Leo Varadkar and Minister Simon Coveney at the Fine Gael hustings

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