Thursday 16 August 2018

Browne quizzes McDonald over Sinn Féin policy

Vincent Browne chaired a Sinn Féin event in Dublin attended by party leader Mary Lou McDonald. Picture: Collins
Vincent Browne chaired a Sinn Féin event in Dublin attended by party leader Mary Lou McDonald. Picture: Collins
Kevin Doyle

Kevin Doyle

Broadcaster Vincent Browne has chaired a public Sinn Féin event dealing with the issue of Brexit.

The former TV3 presenter sat at the top table for the gathering alongside Mary Lou McDonald, Patricia King of the Irish Congress of Trade Unions and Damian McGenity from Border Communities Against Brexit.

He agreed to host the panel discussion despite recent criticism of his work by Ms McDonald.

In a book about the late Martin McGuinness, Ms McDonald hit out at his treatment by elements of the Irish media, singling out Mr Browne for engaging in "nonsense" although adding she liked him personally.

"You would swear listening to these people that Martin McGuinness was the trigger that caused the northern Troubles. The utter hypocrisy of it. And the cheek of them to say to him, 'Who are you from Derry to presume that you're Irish enough or that your citizenship is of sufficient standing that you should contest for the position of first citizen?' It was absolutely obnoxious," she wrote.

The event last week was billed as 'Brexit and You'. It took place in Drumcondra, part of Ms McDonald's Dublin Central constituency.

A video posted on the local branch's Facebook shows Mr Browne and Ms McDonald sparring over Sinn Féin's policy on Brexit.

He questions why she doesn't advocate Ireland leaving the EU since Sinn Féin has been a long-time critic of the union.

Mr Browne puts it to her that it used to be Sinn Féin policy to cut and run, adding this would help ensure there was no hard Border after Brexit.

"It used to be in 1972, it's not in 2018," Ms McDonald replied.

Irish Independent

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