Taoiseach Leo Varadkar: The day in quotes

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar: The day in quotes

Fiachra O'Cionnaith, Political Correspondent, gives a round-up of Leo Varadkar's first day as Taoiseach in quotes.

New Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar, outlines what his plans will be in power:

"The government I lead will not be one of left or right. While others in the house may be obsessed with the debates of the 1980s, I can assure you I am not and nor will my Government.

"So the Government I lead will be one of the new European centre, as we seek to build a Republic of opportunity, and that is a Republic in which every citizen gets a fair go and has the opportunity to succeed."

And pays tribute to now former taoiseach Enda Kenny - a man he is accused of effectively forcing from office:

"On a personal note, I would like to add, were it not for Enda Kenny I have no doubt I would not be standing here in this seat today."

New best friend Enda Kenny repays the tributes:

"You are the right person for the right time."

After congratulating Mr Varadkar, Fianna Fáil leader Micheal Martin puts down a marker for future battles:

"Even his most ardent supporters have had to strain themselves to claim he has more than a modest policy record as a minister."

But shows his lighter side by saying there is at least one difference between the old boss and the new one:

"He [Mr Varadkar] has today started well by getting somebody other than Noel Rock to nominate him. As we all know, that didn't work out too well last time."

Labour leader Brendan Howlin questions the "liberal" revolution of appointing a gay first generation Irish person Taoiseach:

"I want to believe you will re-start the engine of Government. But I'm afraid I don't expect much."

Who knew Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams was such good friends with Leo Varadkar?:

"I wish him [Mr Varadkar] well. I do not know him well, though he and I once attended the same pilates class. We could not get the former Taoiseach to stretch as far as that."

Well, maybe not 'friends' exactly, judging by Mr Varadkar's response:

"I also thank Gerry Adams for revealing our little secret. He was much better at it. Perhaps he has greater experience of being in a tight squeeze."

Unaligned Independent TD Mattie McGrath is not always known for his erudite quotes, but even so, this 1970s rock music-inspired cabinet reshuffle tongue-twister took everyone by surprise:

[After referencing, to laughter, The Who classic 'Don't Get Fooled Again', and its lyric "meet the new boss, same as the old boss"] "Yeah, Who. Who's who now, but who will be who over there this evening?"

Forget the jogging, cupcakes and fluffy PR stunts, Leo. Greens leader Eamon Ryan isn't buying any of it:

"You're too right wing, and despite all the pilates and frappo-ccinos, and jogging, there's not a scintilla of Green in you."

Or Social Democrats TD Catherine Murphy:

"Just because someone comes from a diverse background doesn't mean they have empathy for people from that background."

Don't worry though Enda, at least one person still remembers you:

[Independents4Change TD Mick Wallace, after saying he wishes Mr Varadkar well] "And good luck to the other fella too."

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