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Martin stands by his ever-loyal 'bruiser' amid fear and rumour

Hugh O'Connell


Loyalty has worked both ways over the years between Barry Cowen and his party leader, writes Hugh O'Connell

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Loyalty has worked both ways over the years between Barry Cowen and his party leader Micheál Martin. Photo: Gareth Chaney, Collins

Loyalty has worked both ways over the years between Barry Cowen and his party leader Micheál Martin. Photo: Gareth Chaney, Collins

Loyalty has worked both ways over the years between Barry Cowen and his party leader Micheál Martin. Photo: Gareth Chaney, Collins

Barry Cowen's occasionally gruff and truculent demeanour around Leinster House is sometimes mistaken for an arrogance that some would argue is typical of a man who hails from a political dynasty.

He has not always got on well with colleagues in his own party but, that said, he is broadly respected, well-liked and rated by many of them. Even privately, Fianna Fail TDs were more likely to sympathise than excoriate him as the controversy over his drink-driving ban overshadowed the party's second full week in government.


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