Saturday 3 December 2016

Burton can recover the ground lost by Labour

Published 08/06/2014 | 02:30

Illustration by Jim Cogan
Illustration by Jim Cogan

TODAY'S Sunday Independent/ MillwardBrown poll shows a slight preference for a Fianna Fail-Sinn Fein coalition. Before foolish members of the Fianna Fail front bench float away on a fantasy of fumes from the ministerial Mercedes, they should reflect on three reasons why Micheal Martin is right to rule out coalition with Sinn Fein.

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First, the poll merely means that public anger has not yet abated. But the country has not swung permanently to Sinn Fein or Independents. I predict both groups will suffer severe setbacks at the next General Election unless the Independents form a cohesive political alliance.

Second, if Fianna Fail moves too close to Sinn Fein it will confirm Middle Ireland's suspicion that it is still a redneck republican party. Even if it succeeded in doing a squalid deal, it would not last two years – and only Sinn Fein would walk away alive from the coalition crash.

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