A newly elected Green Party TD's county council seat has been given to his wife.
Wicklow TD Steven Matthews was forced to give up his council seat after he was elected to the Dáil.
But now his wife, Erika Doyle, has been co-opted to replace him on Wicklow County Council.
Yesterday, Ms Doyle, who is a journalist, said she was "transparently" selected and nominated to take her husband's seat by her local party organisation.
"The Green Party is a fully democratic party," she said, before adding: "People are not appointed because of who they know and I wasn't appointed.
"I was selected, I was nominated and a full process was gone through and the Green Party members in Wicklow believe I am capable to represent them."
Councillors are paid €17,060 a year along with unvouched expenses of between €2,286 and €2,667, and vouched expenses up to €5,000.
Ms Doyle said she accepted that it was "slightly newsworthy and noteworthy" that she was taking her husband's seat but insisted she was fully qualified for the position.
The new councillor said she is the public relations officer for the Green Party in Wicklow and was her husband's campaign manager for the General Election.
She said that her job as a reporter also involved working in local politics.
"I don't think it would be unusual for someone in that position to be selected and nominated and approved by their local party.
"Obviously what makes it newsworthy is that I'm Steven's wife but if that's the only reason I shouldn't be selected and co-opted then there's probably something wrong there," she added.
She said she intended on giving up her job as a news reporter and said she would not be working as her husband's parliamentary assistant in Leinster House when the Dáil commences.
Mr Matthews said he believed his wife was the "best person" to replace him on the council. He said she has "experience on a wide range of local government functions, local issues and on-going projects" including those with "green objectives".
He also noted she was supported by the local Green Party membership.
The new TD was first elected to Wicklow County Council in 2014 and topped the poll in his ward last year.
Mr Matthews and Ms Doyle are not the only husband and wife politicians in the party.
Green Party deputy leader Catherine Martin's husband Francis Noel Duffy was elected to the Dáil along with his wife earlier this month.
Ms Martin's brother, Vincent P Martin, also contested the General Election but was not elected.
Yesterday, Green Party officials held government formation talks with Sinn Féin.
Speaking after the meeting, Green Party leader Eamon Ryan said the parties agreed to a "policy-driven process" that aims to "find the common ground".
"This process will be facilitated by the National Economic and Social Council," he said.
"The two parties had a plenary session between the two teams.
"Areas to be explored include housing, health, climate and biodiversity, Brexit and constitutional change, childcare, education, local government, finance, and workers' rights.
"We look forward to these talks and we see the first step in a move to a more constructive policy-based engagement between all political parties."
Sinn Féin Dáil deputy leader Pearse Doherty said his party was having "detailed discussions".
He said: "Our efforts are in stark contrast with Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael who will meet to discuss how they would rotate the position of Taoiseach and how they will put together the very government which has just been voted out of office."