Tuesday 23 January 2018

Mary Lou v Leo - RTE pull radio debate as row between parties continues

Sinn Féin deputy leader Mary Lou McDonald. Photo: Tom Burke
Sinn Féin deputy leader Mary Lou McDonald. Photo: Tom Burke
Taoiseach Leo Varadkar. Photo: Reuters
Radio host Sean O'Rourke
Niall O'Connor

Niall O'Connor

A planned radio debate between Fine Gael and Sinn Féin was pulled after Mary Lou McDonald said she was only prepared to go head to head with Taoiseach Leo Varadkar.

RTÉ’s ‘Today with Sean O’Rourke’ asked Ms McDonald to appear on the show today to take part in a debate with a Fine Gael representative.

The proposed topic of discussion was Ms McDonald’s heated exchanges with Mr Varadkar on consecutive occasions this week.

While Fine Gael was prepared to put forward a minister, Sinn Féin told RTÉ that Ms McDonald would only appear if it was with the Taoiseach.

Mr Varadkar, however, was unavailable as he was en route to Tallinn, Estonia for a meeting with the country’s prime minister.

Ms McDonald later appeared on RTÉ’s ‘The News at One’.

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar. Photo: Reuters
Taoiseach Leo Varadkar. Photo: Reuters

A Sinn Fein source says the party offered to put forward a different spokesperson but the item was pulled.

Radio host Sean O'Rourke
Radio host Sean O'Rourke

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