Yates dishes the dirt in memoir despite clean-up operation by lawyers

Ivan Yates with his wife Deirdre and daughters  Ciara and Sarah at the launch of 'Full On' at the Marker Hotel, Dublin. Pictures: Gareth Chaney

Cabinet minister turned radio personality Ivan Yates quipped that his biography was still a good read despite lawyers insisting 10,000 of its most biting words be taken out.

Launching the memoir, Full On, which chronicles an at times difficult childhood, a colourful political career, and a turbulent business life that ended in bankruptcy, the Newstalk Breakfast co-host said: ‘If anyone’s reputation is most destroyed, I think it’s myself.’

Broadcaster Pat Kenny described the book as a cross between “Dallas and Dynasty, with a bit of House of Cards thrown in, and a lot of Love/Hate”.

Mr Kenny added that the book was “Not at all pretty, but pretty compelling.’

As the book paints a warts-and-all view of his former Fine Gael colleagues such as Enda Kenny, with whom he used to share a Dáil office, and Michael Noonan, Mr Yates joked that the cabinet members present at the book launch might live to regret their attendance.

Among those in attendance were Health Minister Leo Varadkar, Justice Minister Frances Fitzgerald, and chief whip Paul Kehoe.

Also in attendance were former Fianna Fáil finance minister Charlie McCreevy, businessman Bill Cullen, and former Ireland and Munster rugby star Frankie Sheehan.

Mr Yates, who rejoined Newstalk last year after moving to Wales in order to take advantage of the UK’s lighter bankruptcy rules, said that he had originally penned 170,000 words, but this was edited down to 110,000 words by the publishers, before lawyers took out another 10,000.

The breakfast host, who served as minister for agriculture in the 1990s, chronicles years of in-fighting and heaves within Fine Gael, as well as his personal challenges and triumphs in the book.


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