Leo Varadkar has repeated his promise that his party will not go into government with Sinn Féin. The Fine Gael leader was speaking to reporters in Dublin earlier today although the latest opinion poll suggests he won’t have to worry about such matters.
According to the latest Irish Times/Ipsos MRBI opinion poll, Sinn Féin is now in front at 25% while Fine Gael’s support has slipped to 20%. Fianna Fáil is also down at 23%. It’s the first election in the history of the state where Sinn Féin has registered higher support in the polls than Fine Gael, however the news doesn’t seem to have registered with Mr. Varadkar.
“Let me assure the voters again that Fine Gael will not go into government with Sinn Féin. You have my word on that and if you can’t trust the word of a man who just tried to commemorate the Black & Tans and then changed his mind because it wasn’t popular, who can you trust?”
Obviously there’s nothing Sinn Féin would love more than to join forces with Fine Gael, particularly poppy-wearing unionist sympathiser Charlie Flanagan who was behind the ill-fated Royal Irish Constabulary commemoration and who objects to the wearing of Easter Lilies in Dáil Eireann. Alas they’ll just have to accept it’s probably not going to happen.
Meanwhile Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin reiterated that he would not go into government with Sinn Féin as a matter of principle but would consider continuing to prop up a government responsible for the worst homeless crisis in the history of the state and for 12,000 patients sleeping on hospital trolleys in January alone.