THE COMMUNICATIONS MINISTER, Pat Rabbitte, has said that he’s happy where he is but knows that he has no power over what happens next.
A massive reshuffle is expected in the coming days following the announcement that Joan Burton is the new Labour Leader and Tánaiste.
Minister Rabbitte has insisted he will not resign. Ruairí Quinn stepped down earlier this week so as not to be considered in the reshuffle.
Speaking on RTÉ Radio 1 this afternoon Rabbitte said:
“It’s not a challenge about swapping chairs or personalities, the cabinet are to have a mix of dynamic young people with new ideas and experience.
As regards what happens next, I have no role or influence nor have I sought to exert any influence – good, bad or indifferent.
“It’s the job of the Taoiseach and Tánaiste to construct their cabinet. A reshuffle has to be handled with great care but it is a decision that the two people concerned make.”
Speaking about his position, the Communication Minister said: “I’m just doing my job. I’m very happy where I am.”
When questioned by Claire Byrne about the speculation that he will be gone, he said:
Of course I’m not accepting that and the political writers don’t make the decisions.
He also added that he enjoys reshuffles, saying: “why wouldn’t journalists write about it, it’s great fun.”
He was also asked if he would leave politics if not put in the cabinet next week, he replied:
I haven’t even contemplated that question yet and that’s the truth. I haven’t envisaged this focus coming on me.
“I don’t have any control over what will happen from here.”
Speaking about Phil Hogan, Rabbitte said:
“You could make a logical argument that the Taoiseach should keep Phil Hogan in the cabinet…and I for one wouldn’t be surprised if that was the outcome.”