The 5 at 5 Five things you need to know: No Valentine for Merkel from Enda, McWilliams regrets opening the door to Brian Lenihan (literally), and a dash to hospital for a Grammy reporter.

Every afternoon, brings you five things you really need to know at 5 o’clock.

1. #GE11: As attention turns to tonight’s leaders’ debate between the heads of Ireland’s five main political parties, Enda Kenny has told German chancellor Angela Merkel that any FG government would not consider raising its interest rate as part of a Europe-wide ‘competitiveness plan’.

Micheál Martin, meanwhile, has come under some fire after being accused of racism following comments at a Dublin Web Summit breakfast this morning, when he attempted to speak in a Chinese accent. will have full live coverage of the debate on our liveblog and our @thejournal_live Twitter account from 9:30pm.

2. #MCWILLIAMS: Economist and one-time prospective Dáil candidate David McWilliams has admitted he regrets hosting Brian Lenihan in his house in September 2008, days before the finance minister introduced the bank guarantee scheme.

Speaking at a People’s Economy webinar this morning, McWilliams said that if he had known what Lenihan would have done with the idea McWilliams floated during Lenihan’s visit, “I wouldn’t have opened the door to him that night.”

The story of Lenihan’s visit – in which he ate cloves of garlic to stay alert – was told in McWilliams’ book Follow The Money.

3. #MIDDLE EAST: It’s been another day of tension and drama in the Middle East. The entire cabinet of the Palestinian Authority has resigned in order to allow prime minister Salam Fayyad carry out a reshuffle in order to ease tensions in the region.

The big news in Egypt, meanwhile, is that Hosni Mubarak is reported to have gone into a coma on Saturday night in the  Red Sea resort of Sharm al-Sheikh.

4. #GAEILGE: A crowd of around 200 Irish language students converged on Fine Gael’s headquarters in Dublin this afternoon, claiming the party was “dumping” the language.

Protesting at the building with pictures bearing broken hearts (it is Valentine’s Day, after all) the USI protest was opposed to the party’s plan to make Irish a non-compulsory subject for the Leaving Certificate.

5. #GRAMMYS: What appeared to have been a classic case of live TV flubbery last night may have turned out to be a far more worrying development altogether. Serene Branson was reporting live for CBS when she appeared to stumble over some words – but she was reportedly brought to hospital afterward, having suffered a suspected stroke on air.