Sinn Féin has increased its support in the Republic in the same week it recorded a historic election success in the North, according to the latest Sunday Independent / Ireland Thinks opinion poll.
The popularity of Mary Lou McDonald’s party has increased by one point, with now more than one in three (34pc) of voters saying they will vote for Sinn Féin in the next general election. The result maintains the party’s position as the most popular in the country.
Sinn Féin secured 29pc of first preference votes in the Assembly elections, meaning the party’s leader in the North, Michelle O’Neill, is in pole position to become the first Nationalist first minister of Northern Ireland.
The Sunday Independent / Ireland Thinks poll signals bad news for Fianna Fáil, as the party dropped two points and is now at 16pc following controversies in recent weeks concerning the location of the new National Maternity Hospital and a government plan to ban the sale of turf.
However, Taoiseach Michéal Martin is still the most popular political leader in the country, with an approval rating of 4.5 out of 10. Ms McDonald trails him slightly with a rating of 4.4 out of 10.
Both leaders saw their approval ratings increase marginally since the last poll, last month.
Tánaiste Leo Varadkar’s rating has increased slightly, from 3.8 to 3.9 out of 10, while Fine Gael saw its overall party popularity increase one point to 23pc. However, it is still 11 percentage points behind Sinn Féin.
Green Party leader Eamon Ryan’s rating is the lowest of the political leaders, at 2.1 out of 10, while his party’s support remains unchanged at 3pc.
As for the other parties, Labour is unchanged at 4pc, the Social Democrats are down two points to 4pc, Solidarity-People Before Profit is up two to 4pc, Aontu is unchanged at 3pc and Independent/others are down two to 8pc.
More than half (51pc) of those polled felt the Government is doing a good job, while 34pc said they did not agree it was. Sixteen per cent said they were unsure if the Government was doing a good job.
For full poll coverage and expert analysis by Jody Corcoran and Kevin Cunningham see tomorrow’s Sunday Independent and independent.ie