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Canny Micheal Martin put pressure on his TDs to get out the Yes vote

Hugh O'Connell


Fianna Fail, the Greens and Fine Gael all used smart tactics to persuade their members to buy in, writes Hugh O'Connell

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President Michael D Higgins with the new Cabinet last night. Front row: Eamon Ryan, Taoiseach Micheal Martin, President Higgins, Tánaiste Leo Varadkar.
Second row: Simon Coveney, Catherine Martin, Paschal Donohoe, Michael McGrath, Darragh O’Brien. Third row: Helen McEntee, Roderic O’Gorman,
Heather Humphreys, Norma Foley, Barry Cowen, Simon Harris. Fourth row: attorney general Paul Gallagher, Chief Whip Dara Calleary, Stephen Donnelly,
Pippa Hackett, Hildegarde Naughten. Photo: Maxwells

President Michael D Higgins with the new Cabinet last night. Front row: Eamon Ryan, Taoiseach Micheal Martin, President Higgins, Tánaiste Leo Varadkar. Second row: Simon Coveney, Catherine Martin, Paschal Donohoe, Michael McGrath, Darragh O’Brien. Third row: Helen McEntee, Roderic O’Gorman, Heather Humphreys, Norma Foley, Barry Cowen, Simon Harris. Fourth row: attorney general Paul Gallagher, Chief Whip Dara Calleary, Stephen Donnelly, Pippa Hackett, Hildegarde Naughten. Photo: Maxwells

President Michael D Higgins with the new Cabinet last night. Front row: Eamon Ryan, Taoiseach Micheal Martin, President Higgins, Tánaiste Leo Varadkar. Second row: Simon Coveney, Catherine Martin, Paschal Donohoe, Michael McGrath, Darragh O’Brien. Third row: Helen McEntee, Roderic O’Gorman, Heather Humphreys, Norma Foley, Barry Cowen, Simon Harris. Fourth row: attorney general Paul Gallagher, Chief Whip Dara Calleary, Stephen Donnelly, Pippa Hackett, Hildegarde Naughten. Photo: Maxwells

Micheal Martin has been to many functions at the Clayton Hotel on Dublin's Burlington Road over the last decade.

Its large function room has been the venue for the annual Fianna Fail president's dinner for as long as anyone can remember. For years, grassroots members have paid for the privilege of a three-course meal, a late bar and a speech from Martin that usually contained several barbs at Leo Varadkar and Fine Gael.

Last Friday, he was back in the same venue, addressing a sparsely populated socially distanced room just moments after it was declared that the vast majority of Fianna Fail members - 74pc - had backed his unprecedented proposal to govern with Fine Gael and the Greens.


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Taoiseach Micheal Martin

NEW TITLES: Left, Tanaiste Leo Varadkar and Taoiseach Micheal Martin chat during the first sitting of the 33rd Dail in the Convention Centre, Dublin. Photo: PA