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What if Fianna Fáil DID support Fine Gael after the next election?

No formal deal but on “a case-by-case” basis anything is possible, says the former cabinet minister Willie O’Dea.

Source: Nicky Ryan/TheJournal.ie

WILLIE O’DEA HAS raised the prospect of Fianna Fáil supporting a Fine Gael minority government on a vote-by-vote basis after the next election, saying “anything is possible”.

The former cabinet minister and Limerick TD told TheJournal.ie that his primary concern was Fianna Fáil’s electoral prospects and securing as many as 40 seats next year.

He said this could put Fianna Fáíl in a position of leading a minority government itself.

But on the question of supporting a Fine Gael minority government, O’Dea said: “Well, look, I mean anything is possible.

What I am mainly concerned about are two things in advance of the general election. I am concerned that Fianna Fáil can be as strong as we can make it and get back into the second division.
We were relegated from the first division to the third division in the last election so I suppose to get back to the first division the second division is your next step up, so let’s get back to the second division.

Willlie tache

O’Dea’s suggestion that Fianna Fáil could support Fine Gael on a case-by-case basis comes despite Micheál Martin repeatedly describing Enda Kenny’s party as “too right wing”. But O’Dea said:

The way it will work, in my opinion, is that I don’t think there will be any such thing as a deal. It’ll be a vote-by-vote basis. We’d have to see the policies on a week-by-week basis, which are doing what have to be done.

He said he would support a government “of whatever persuasion” that would maintain the economic recovery but do so in a way that it “touches every section of society”.

But he firmly ruled out doing a deal of any sort with Sinn Féin, saying:

I have absolutely no intention of helping to put the Army Council into power in this country.

O’Dea said Martin had done “a tremendous job” as Fianna Fáil leader, insisting that the very existence of the party was in question after the general election in 2011.

I don’t think there’s anybody in the parliamentary party – who are the only possible candidates for the leadership – who would do the job better and that remains the case.

Read: Willie O’Dea told us about his radical plan to abolish all social welfare 

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Hugh O'Connell

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