Saturday 3 December 2016

Fianna Fáil is back in pole position and for sake of squeezed middle party should stay on course

Published 21/09/2016 | 02:30

Fianna Fáil Leader Micheál Martin addresses the media at the party’s annual think-in, at the Seven Oaks Hotel, Carlow this week. Photo: Conor McCabe Photography
Fianna Fáil Leader Micheál Martin addresses the media at the party’s annual think-in, at the Seven Oaks Hotel, Carlow this week. Photo: Conor McCabe Photography

What a difference a think-in makes. A year ago, with Enda Kenny supposedly a shoo-in to be comfortably returned as Taoiseach, much of the media was writing off Micheál Martin and Fianna Fáil. The Soldiers of Destiny had no policies, no women and no hope.

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Twelve months on, Kenny is indeed Taoiseach, but only of the lame-duck variety. Fianna Fáil is calling the tune from the opposition benches and Martin is odds-on with the bookies to be Taoiseach after the next election.

It's an extraordinary turnaround for which Martin deserves immense credit. It's only September but the nominations for 'Politician of 2016' start and end with him. Nobody comes close in that contest - certainly not any of the other party leaders.

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