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Claim that Sinn Féin TDs have 'zero' influence over policies is untrue, says McDonald

Aontú leader Peadar Tóibín said party policy decisions are made by a small group of people.

Mary Lou McDonald.
Mary Lou McDonald.
Image: Rollingnews.ie

SINN FÉIN LEADER Mary Lou McDonald has dismissed claims from former party member Peadar Tóibín who said TDs have “zero” influence over party policy decisions. 

Tóibín told the Irish Independent that most Sinn Féin TDs are not permitted to choose their own staff members.

The Aontú leader also said key policy decisions are made by six or seven people, before being “handed down” to TDs, the paper reported. 

Speaking to RTÉ’s Morning Ireland today, McDonald dismissed these claims against the party.

“That’s absolutely untrue, and so too is the actually bizzare allegation that somehow the Ard Chomhairle of the party is some sort kind of shadowy force,” she said. 

McDonald and her party’s candidates signed a pledge yesterday to be guided by instructions from its ruling body, the Ard Chomhairle, the Irish Times reported. 

“I can tell you elected members [TDs] have every influence and actually carry a huge responsibility to shape their workload, to deliver on their portfolio,” she said today. 

The leader said she has a team of people including TDs Pearse Doherty and Eoin Ó Broin who “do that admirably”. 

Sinn Féin will be launching its general election manifesto later today.

A recent Business Post/Red C opinion poll has suggested that the party is on 19% support. Fine Gael is on 23% and Fianna Fáil is on 26%, according to the poll. 

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