Sunday 17 December 2017

Timeline: The heave that led to Gilmore's resignation

SUNDAY 2.30pm: Mr Gilmore arranges to meet his two advisers, David Leech and Mark Garrett, in Government Buildings and they are joined by strategist Colm O'Riordan. During the meeting they learn Labour central council member Mick Sweeney has tabled a no confidence motion against Mr Gilmore.Late Afternoon

Late afternoon: Mr Gilmore meets with his most loyal cabinet lieutenants Pat Rabbitte and Brendan Howlin and tells them he is considering resigning but it is understood they pledged their support for him.

Evening: Clare TD Michael McNamara, goes public with his call for Mr Gilmore and the entire frontbench to resign. Dominic Hannigan and John Gilroy spend most of the day ringing his colleagues to find out where they stand.

7pm: Meath East TD Dominic Hannigan, calls Labour's parliamentary chairman Jack Wall and asks if he will accept a motion of no confidence if it was submitted. Mr Wall indicates that he will.

8pm: Mr Gilmore informs his advisers he intends to step down.

MONDAY 9.30pm: Mr Gilmore meets his advisers and they discuss the next move.

10.30am: David Leech calls Labour Party chief whip Emmet Stagg and Mr Wall and asks them to attend a meeting. At the same time, the Tanaiste informs the party's general secretary Ita McAuliffe of his decision to resign.

11am: Labour parliamentarians, including TDs Ged Nash, Derek Nolan, Aodhan O Riordain, Michael McNamara and senator John Gilroy, meet in TD Ciara Conway's apartment in Dublin. Arthur Spring was also aligned with the group. Most of the group were first-time TDs and considered Gilmore loyalists.

1.30pm: Jack Wall receives a call from Mr Hannigan. He formally puts forward a motion of no confidence in Gilmore to be tabled at the parliamentary party meeting on Wednesday. Mr Wall accepts and news of the heave tops the news bulletins.

Early afternoon: The rebels believe Mr Gilmore's comments on RTE News mean he will remain as leader and they need to move quickly. They are convinced the ministerial meeting later that afternoon was called so he could rally support among his closest allies. Phones start ringing in the Rialto apartment and senior Labour figures plead with the group to withdraw the motion.

4pm: After meeting his ministerial colleagues, Mr Gilmore holds a press conference and announces he will step down as leader. Surrounded by his cabinet colleagues, Mr Gilmore says he took the decision himself and was not forced to leave office.

Sunday Independent

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