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New left-wing party could make Gerry Adams the next Taoiseach

The Anti-Austerity Alliance and People Before Profit would consider coalition with Sinn Féin after the next election, says one of its TDs.

07/03/2015: Sinn Fein President Gerry Adams delive

THE NEW LEFT-wing political party that was formally launched today would be prepared to support Sinn Féin in government and Gerry Adams as Taoiseach, according to AAA TD Paul Murphy.

The Anti-Austerity Alliance (AAA) and People Before Profit (PBP) today announced it was joining forces ahead of the next election. It’s aiming to win at least seven seats in the next Dáil.

The party intends to contest at least 27 of the 40 Dáil constituencies in the hope of capitalising on the anti-water charges movement which Murphy said had changed Irish politics.

It has ruled out coalition with Fine Gael, Labour, Fianna Fáil and Renua. But Murphy said the possibility of supporting Sinn Féin in government would be considered if there was a commitment to end austerity:

Source: Quinton O'Reilly/TheJournal.ie

Speaking to TheJournal.ie at our offices in Dublin today, he said: “We want a left government. After the elections we would look at the numbers.

If the numbers were there, for example, for a Sinn Féin, left independent, AAA, PBP majority in the Dáil we’d have to sit down and talk about a programme.

Asked specifically if AAA-PBP would be prepared to back Gerry Adams as Taoiseach and a Sinn Féin-led government – if a coalition deal could be reached – Murphy said:

In circumstances where a left programme, that takes on the interests of the one per cent in this country and really ends austerity, could be agreed, yes.

Adams has repeatedly said he has no personal desire to be Taoiseach despite leading his party into an election where it hopes to win the most seats and lead the next government.

What about that name?

On the launch of the new party, Murphy said the somewhat unwieldy name reflected the nature of the joint initiative between AAA and PBP.

murphy

He said both movements had played key roles in the anti-water charges movement and the “transformation of politics in this country”. He added:

If we get seven seats we will be a recognised parliamentary grouping from the point of view of the rules in the Dáil, which means that it’s just a much bigger platform to be able to put forward principled, left, anti-capitalist, socialist arguments.

“It means Leaders’ Questions every single day by a principled left TD. So seven is the crucial number. We think we can achieve that.”

He said that in addition to retaining his own seat he hoped to get a running mate elected with him in Dublin South West.

The party also hopes to retain seats in Dublin West (Ruth Coppinger) and Dún Laoghaire (Richard Boyd-Barrett) and take new seats in Dublin South Central, Dublin Bay North, Dublin Fingal, Cork North Central and Limerick City.

There will be more from our interview with Paul Murphy on TheJournal.ie in the coming days. 

Read: Why this TD thinks USC could be abolished entirely within six years

Read: How far apart is this potential coalition? We’re about to find out…

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Hugh O'Connell

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