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Róisín Shortall: We need more than just politicians to start a new political party

The former Labour TD is “very open” to the idea of a new political party, she told TheJournal.ie.

Source: Video TheJournal.ie/YouTube

Róisín Shortall on the challenges facing Joan Burton. Video and editing: Michelle Hennessy 

FORMER MINISTER RÓISÍN Shortall believes that any new party would need to call on people working outside of politics in order to work successfully.

The former Labour TD has said she is “very open” to the idea of a new political party but doubts whether it might happen this side of the next general election.

She also said that “lots of people outside of Leinster House” could contribute to the process, telling TheJournal.ie: “I think a combination of progressive people outside [of politics], from civic society and politicians might be the answer.”

“I think there is a strong appetite from people for something new – a new party that would espouse the values that the Labour party would have espoused, strong values in relation to equality,” she added.

She said that while Sinn Féin’s policies are “good on the equality front” they are not trusted by the majority of the Irish people and are too closely associated with paramilitary activity.

Asked whether she might rejoin Labour under new leader Joan Burton, Shortall said she has “no plans to for the foreseeable future”.

“I think what the Labour party has been doing in the last few years has been very disappointing, not only for the public, but very disappointing to me as a lifetime member,” she said.

We also asked what chance she thinks Burton has of succeeding in rebuilding the party.

Watch her response in the above video. A full interview with Róisín Shortall will be online later today. 

Róisín Shortall: I’m surprised the ‘very inexperienced’ James Reilly wasn’t sacked

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Hugh O'Connell

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