Thursday 19 October 2017

Daniel McConnell: Minister's dismissive style raises hackles

CRITICISED: Pat Rabbitte's pylon plan is unpopular
CRITICISED: Pat Rabbitte's pylon plan is unpopular

DANIEL McCONNELL Political Correspondent

IT takes some doing to be more unpopular than Dr James Reilly, but this weekend Labour's Communications Minister Pat Rabbitte has become exactly that.

He has become the latest bete noire of rural Ireland, Fine Gael TDs and even his own Labour TDs and senators over the plans to blitz the Irish countryside with "monster" electricity pylons.

Mr Rabbitte is the man charged with overseeing the rollout of a €3bn-plus system of new pylons, which he says will ensure new jobs and inward investment into Ireland. But it is not just the actual plan for the pylons that has caused anger, but Mr Rabbitte's own increasingly dogmatic and dismissive style, which has gotten up the noses of his colleagues.

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