Niall Carson/PA
neck and neck

Sinn Féin and Fianna Fáil tied for top spot, new opinion poll suggests

The Business Post/Red C poll has Sinn Féin up five points at 24%.

SUPPORT FOR SINN Féin has increased once again according to a new opinion poll, putting the party in joint first place alongside Fianna Fáil. 

The Business Post/Red C poll has Sinn Féin up five points at 24%, Fianna Fáil on 24% and Fine Gael on 21%.

This poll of 1,000 voters follows on from yesterday’s Panelbase poll for The Times that saw support for Sinn Féin jump ahead of Fine Gael for the first time this general election campaign and only trailing Fianna Fáil by two points.

With less than one week until polling day, Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil are both down by two points respectively on the last comparable poll earlier this month.

Despite recent opinion polls revealing that Sinn Féin is continuing to perform well, both leaders of Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil have ruled out going into coalition with Mary Lou McDonald.

Leo Varadkar said he does not trust Fianna Fáil not to go into government with Sinn Féin, while Fianna Fáil has accused Fine Gael of the same.

Meanwhile, the Green Party is down one point to 7%,  while Labour is up one to 5%.

Independents are down two points to 10%, while the Social Democrats are unchanged at 3%, with Solidarity-PBP down one at 1%.

Aontú is up one point on 2% support, while other parties are listed as having 1%, according to this Red C poll.

Responding to the results of the poll, RTÉ released a statement about its leaders’ debate on Tuesday, to say that they would continue to consider “representations made”. 

Sinn Féin has repeatedly called for its leader Mary Lou to be included in the leaders debate; RTÉ has defended it’s decision to keep it between Martin and Varadkar as the two candidates to be Taoiseach, based on previous electoral results.

Off the back of this poll, it can be argued that Sinn Féin is as likely to lead a government as Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael.

RTÉ’s statement today said: “At the outset of the election RTÉ set out its approach to leaders debates based on empirical data. That has not changed.

“Throughout the campaign RTÉ has considered representations made by those contesting the election regarding our coverage and leaders debates. We will continue to give consideration to any representation made.”

The telephone poll of 1000 voters was carried between 25 and 30 January, and the margin of error is plus or minus 3%.

Updated by Gráinne Ní Aodha

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