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Sunday 10 December 2023 Dublin: 7°C
Never in the IRA

The vast majority of people don't believe Gerry Adams

A new poll finds that nine out of ten people don’t believe the Sinn Féin president’s claim that he was never in the IRA.

NINE OUT OF ten people do not believe Gerry Adams’s long-standing claim that he was never a member of the IRA, according to a new poll.

The Claire Byrne Live/Amárach Research has found that 89% of people do not believe Adams when he says he was never a member of the paramilitary organisation.

The Sinn Féin president has consistently denied he is or ever was a member of the IRA.

According to the same poll, 4% believe Adams while 7% say they don’t know.


Speaking to Claire Byrne this evening, Adams described his denial of ever being a member of the IRA as his “consistent position”, and asked why the question has been repeatedly put to him.

He added that he doesn’t believe it is an issue among unionists.

When asked how he would respond to those who voted in the poll to say they do not believe him, Adams said they are wrong and had this message to them:

I don’t say anything to them. I say vote for Sinn Féin in the next general election, I say vote for Sinn Féin to continue our work in the peace process. Have whatever position you want on me, but ensure that what this government has done for the last four years in this State is not repeated after this next election and that we’re not all fooled again…

Adams went on to criticise Byrne for not discussing issues such as welfare reform or the British and Irish governments ‘not honouring their commitments’, and referenced a previous occasion when the question of IRA membership was put to him:

If you go back to Gay Byrne eons ago you could roll the tape.

The result is in line with previous polls, which have shown that the majority of voters don’t believe the Louth TD.

Those polled were split on the question of whether it mattered to them if Adams was ever a member of the IRA, 47% saying it does matter, 45% saying it doesn’t and 8% of respondents saying they don’t know.

In May last year, 68% of respondents to an Ipsos MRBI poll for the Irish Times said they did not believe Adams, including 59% of Sinn Féin supporters.

In March 2013 interview with, Adams made this definitive statement on allegations about his past connections with the organisation:

Speaking last year, Adams said he was “very relaxed” about the fact that most Sinn Féin voters think he was in the IRA.

He said that “people will make up their own minds on the issue of the IRA and all that” and repeated that he has never dissociated himself from the organisation.

Additional reporting by Nicky Ryan.

The poll was conducted today by Amárach Research. The survey panel comprises more than 1,000 adults who all own a smartphone. More details here.

Gerry Adams: I’m very relaxed about most Sinn Féin supporters thinking I was in the IRA

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