Losing heavy-hitters and stuck in the polls, Burton needs a boost
The departures were no surprise to anyone in or near Leinster House. It's just that they come at a time of ongoing difficulty for Joan Burton's Labour. The party could be as low as 6pc, or at best at something around 10pc.
This week three stalwarts headed for the exit: party chairman Jack Wall, who turned 70 at the start of the month; former leader Pat Rabbitte who is 66; and Seán Kenny who is 73. Nobody could accuse them of quitting early.
Of the three, Jack Wall is the biggest loss, as his quiet and decent demeanour belied his ability to keep a lid on things in the parliamentary party as times got rocky.