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symbolic move

Enda Kenny paid a visit to Pantibar

One of the Dublin scene’s best known venues, Pantibar is owned by gay rights activist Rory O’Neill, aka. Panti Bliss.

Updated at 7.30am

DECEMBER IS HERE.

And the first of the office Christmas parties are taking place.

Members of Fine Gael LGBT were celebrating in style at Dublin’s Pantibar last night — the Capel Street venue owned by Rory O’Neill, aka. drag queen Panti Bliss.

Amongst the VIP guests — a certain well-known Taoiseach…

Chairman of the Oireachtas Health Committee Jerry Buttimer, Fine Gael Deputy Leader James Reilly and a raft of other FG and Young Fine Gael members are also at the venue.

Buttimer set up the Fine Gael LGBT group back in 2012 — and said that when he explained to the Taoiseach that he was coming out, he had been heartened by Kenny’s reaction.

The symbolism of last night’s photo-op will be lost on no-one — Rory O’Neill was, of course, at the centre of the long-running ‘Pantigate’ saga earlier this year, which sparked a national conversation on homophobia.

A referendum on same-sex marriage is to be held in spring of next year.

And, though the Taoiseach’s refusal to state his own personal position on the issue caused some controversy in the summer of 2012, he has since said he will support it and will canvass for it.

In case you were wondering, Panti’s not there…

But she was tweeting about it.

First published 2 December

Read: RTÉ payout after Panti interview was ‘moronic’, says Graham Norton

Read: RTÉ stands by its account of Panti events, says Waters’ apology was ‘unacceptable’

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