“I’M NOT CERTAIN that how I think would be how the majority of the members in the Labour Party think,” Labour Minister Kathleen Lynch admitted to TheJournal.ie.
The junior minister was telling this website why she would never go for Eamon Gilmore’s position as head of the party, “I think they want someone who reflects their thinking”:
Lynch believes others “are hamstrung by history” while she believes “there are times when you need to be more adventurous”.
Speaking about recent opinion polls that show a drop in support for Labour, Lynch says it’s because it’s the most “unique party”. “It suffers most in government and yet when we’re out of government the one thing I hear… is it was a great government”.
“Polls in the middle of a government term are one thing, I think polls three months before an election are an entirely different thing,” she added.
Relationship with James Reilly
Lynch has a “good working relationship” with Minister for Health James Reilly but admitted: “There were times when we don’t agree… Coming up to the Budget we will disagree even more.”
The minister’s relationship with Reilly is unlike her one-time Labour colleague, former junior minister Róisín Shortall. Shortall, now an Independent TD, resigned as Minister of State for Primary Care last September.
Her decision followed a much-publicised dispute with the Health Minister James Reilly over a number of issues including the allocation of new primary care centres to Reilly’s constituency.
When asked if there could have been a better mode of communication between Reilly and Shortall, Lynch said, “We could all do better in relation to communication… Sometimes when we’re very busy we miss the signals.”
Fianna Fáil vs. Sinn Féin
Lynch was more favourable of a possible coalition with the Sinn Fein party rather than Fianna Fáil as she doesn’t think “the Irish people are willing to forgive Fianna Fáil just yet”.
“It would be my honest hope that they wouldn’t,” she added.
She has a “good relationship” with Sinn Fein TDs but a new coalition would all depend on what the public want:
- Camera and editing by Michelle Hennessey