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John Halligan believes the government won't serve its full term

The Waterford TD believes no party wants an election any time soon.

Image: RollingNews.ie

JUNIOR MINISTER JOHN Halligan believes the current government will last  ”two of three years”, despite warning that he would withdraw his support if an attempt was made to remove his Independent Alliance colleague Shane Ross from his Cabinet position.

“We need stability,” he told RTÉ’s Today with Sean O’Rourke show, highlighting the “dire consequences” Brexit could have on the Irish economy, the election of Donald Trump in the United States, as well as economic and political instability across Europe.

“I don’t think any party in the Dáil wants an election.”

“If we can make sure everybody’s treated with fairness and dignity, and I’m talking about everybody on both sides of the government, then it will last.”

Support for government

The Waterford TD was speaking after an interview with The Irish Times in which he told the paper of threats to drop his support for the minority Fine Gael government over the treatment of Ross.

Ross came under fire over his comments on judicial reform – a priority for the Independent Alliance – in which he described judges as living a ‘charmed life’ and claiming there has “always been massive resistance to change from the judiciary”.

Speaking to RTÉ Radio 1, Halligan described Ross as a “friend of mine… I think he’s a good guy and a good politician”.

What will happen if there was an attempt to remove him from government, quite bluntly, I’d go with him.

“I think he was influential in forming this government”, Halligan added while criticising other independent TDs who were unwilling to go into government, suggesting they were “back at home watching telly”.

Halligan, who serves as a junior minister at the Department of Jobs, described further tensions within government after he wasn’t informed about job announcements in his constituency.

“I wasn’t being formed about them, or being informed late about it,” he said.

I’m not saying it’s [Minister for Jobs Mary Mitchell O'Connor]‘s fault, but the buck does stop with the minister for the department.

11/12/2007 Mary Mitchell Joins Fine Gael

“I would imagine that as a junior minister in my constituency, if there’s announcements being made, as has been the case with former junior ministers, they would make the announcements.”

“These are teething problems.”

Read: John Halligan lobbying for support for right-to-die bill >

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Nicky Ryan

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