Monday 22 January 2018

Standoff between Kenny and Burton over Jobs Minister post: Coalition sources

Taoiseach Enda Kenny TD with Tanaiste Joan Burton. Photo: Damien Eagers
Taoiseach Enda Kenny TD with Tanaiste Joan Burton. Photo: Damien Eagers
Fionnan Sheahan

Fionnan Sheahan

A STANDOFF has developed between Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Tanaiste Joan Burton over the Jobs Minister’s position, Coalition sources claim.

The Labour Party wants the position in Cabinet, but Fine Gael doesn’t want to give it up.

Mr Kenny and Ms Burton will continue their talks on the reshuffle and the policy priorities for the Government this afternoon after the Cabinet meeting.

Yesterday’s first round of meeting focused mainly on policy issues. Ms Burton is believed to have pitched for the Jobs portfolio, but was rebutted by Mr Kenny.

The discussions on the reshuffle will resume between the Taoiseach and Tanaiste later today.

The Cabinet is holding its first meeting this morning since Ms Burton replaced Mr Gilmore as Tanaiste – and the last before the reshuffle.

While ministers are tucked away in the Cabinet Room going through their agenda with Taoiseach Enda Kenny, the rumour mill in Leinster House has gone in to overdrive.

Mr Kenny yesterday played down the reshuffle speculation.

“I’ve seen the make-up of 10 different Cabinets in the media over the weekend,” he said.

That list has grown over the past 48 hours.

Here’s the latest from the Cabinet reshuffle rumour mill, with a heavy health warning attached:

Cabinet (rumoured):

* Ivana Bacik to become Education Minister;

* Paschal Donohoe goes up to Cabinet;

The new Cabinet - according to the latest rumours
The new Cabinet - according to the latest rumours

* Alan Kelly as Transport Minister;

* Dr James Reilly as Foreign Affairs Minister;

* Jimmy Deenihan to survive in Cabinet;

* Leo Varadkar to become Environment Minister;

* Simon Coveney to stay as Agriculture Minister;

Junior Ministers (rumoured):

Big clear out of junior ministers;

* Simon Harris for European Affairs Minister;

* Mary Mitchell-O’Connor for junior minister;

* Michael McCarthy for junior minister.

* Liam Twomey as Junior Finance Minister.

* Alex White to remain Junior Health Minister.

* Michael Ring and Tom Hayes to stay as juniors;

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