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Dublin: 1 °C Monday 18 November, 2019

Stephen Donnelly won't rule out joining another party after Soc Dem departure

He said he would be consulting with supporters in his constituency before deciding the way forward.

Image: Sam Boal

TD STEPHEN DONNELLY has not ruled out joining another political party, after his announcement today that he is leaving the Social Democrats.

Speaking to RTÉ’s Drivetime this evening, Donnelly said it is “a sad day” and that he considered it a “great privilege” to have worked with colleagues Catherine Murphy and Róisín Shortall.

He denied suggestions by his former party colleagues that he had left because he is not a team player or had shied away from the work involved.

“I think it’s an unfortunate line that Catherine and Roisin are taking. Nobody who has started a political party can ever be accused of being work-shy.”

He said he had concluded after two years that the team was no longer working.

It was a team effort. We all did things right, we all made mistakes.

“Am I partly to blame for it? Absolutely I am,” he said this evening.

When asked whether he would revert back to being an independent TD or consider joining another party, Donnelly would not be drawn to commit to either.

“My head for the last two years has been in the Social Democrats. In the last few weeks it has been only in whether or not to stay and continue to try.”

Donnelly also said he would love to be in government, but felt he could still make a difference from the opposition benches.

He said he would be consulting with supporters in his constituency over the next few days about which direction he should take now, adding it was “a conversation that has to be had”.

Read: Stephen Donnelly has left the Social Democrats>

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