Paschal Donohoe: 'No panic' in Fine Gael over bad opinion poll

Paschal Donohoe: 'No panic' in Fine Gael over bad opinion poll
Fine Gael Director of Organisation and Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe in Dublin today. Pic: Collins

Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe has rejected his party is “panicked” by a weekend opinion poll, which has Fine Gael 12 points behind Fianna Fáil.

Speaking in Dublin, Mr Donohoe who is Fine Gael's campaign director, said he and his colleagues are “very composed” as to where they are standing.

“So they were very composed about where we stand at the moment. The poll that has come out today will act as a very strong reminder to all of our candidates about the need to work very hard in communities all over the country, to take our message to voters and explain why we're asking for their support in leading the next government,” he said.

“The poll shows the risk of Fianna Fáil returning to office. I would ask those who are considering how they are going to vote to weigh up the Fianna Fáil record of managing our economy. What that could mean with so much risk around us already,” he added.

The Dublin-Central TD hit out at Fianna Fáil's spending commitments already saying they are not affordable.

“My understanding now is they're committed to tax relief and childcare. They appear to be recommitting now to some forms of tax reductions. They've committed today to an SSIA and they've also committed to additional houses being built next year, while continuing to stand by other commitments that they have made over the last number of days,” he said.

“In addition to this, Fianna Fáil have indicated that they're going to run a larger reserve or surplus than I am indicating. You cannot do all of these things at once,” he said.

Speaking in Limerick, Tánaiste Simon Coveney appeared to see a silver lining in the Behaviour and Attitudes (B&A) poll for the Sunday Times, showing his party, Fine Gael, lagging 12 percentage points behind Fianna Fáil.

“I think this poll is going to act as a motivator for Fine Gael people and Fine Gael candidates right across the country,” Mr Coveney told reporters on his way into Thomond Park, Limerick, to watch his beloved Munster try to avoid a similar result albeit against their opposition Ospreys.

Mr Coveney said Fine Gael would “of course, take note” of the poll.

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