Martin hints new deal between FF and FG imminent as Brexit fears deepen
A NEW confidence and supply deal between Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil could be concluded within days as concern mounts over the impact of a ‘no-deal’ Brexit, reports claim tonight.
According to leaked reports, Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin has told a private party meeting that he hopes to meet Taoiseach Leo Varadkar within a few days to discuss a new arrangement.
Mr Varadkar has said he does not want an election before summer 2020.
The Irish Independent is reporting that Mr Martin has received the support of TDs and Senators who attended tonight’s parliamentary party meeting to take discussion “to the next stage”.
However, this appears to be at odds with recent comments from outspoken Fianna Fáil Kilkenny TD John McGuinness when he said there is no appetite within the party grassroots for a renewal of the confidence and supply deal.
At tonight’s meeting, Mr Martin reportedly noted that serious issues had been identified in a number of areas, particularly the Government’s performance on housing and health.
However, he went on to warn about growing public concern over the potential for a disorderly Brexit.
Teams from both sides have spent the past six weeks reviewing the 2016 deal which committed Fianna Fáil to facilitating the passage of three budgets.
Government sources have played down the idea of a swift conclusion though, noting that British Prime Minister Theresa May is in Dublin tomorrow, while Mr Varadkar is due to attend an EU summit in Brussels on Thursday.