Housing minister Eoghan Murphy said that Fine Gael’s and Sinn Féin’s policy platforms are “miles apart from each other”.
“I don’t see where you can bridge that,” he said.
Speaking at the RDS in Dublin, he added: “Just from the basic point of the economy, the proposals they have would take us backwards.
“What I am disregarding are the proposals that Sinn Fein have put forward in their manifesto.
“Proposals that would tax workers, tax investment and tax jobs and would keep us from investing in public services which we need to do.
“It’s not about the voters and the people who support Sinn Féin, it’s about the very populist proposals they put forward and I don’t see how they are compatible with the responsible approach that Fine Gael took.”
Meanwhile in Cork, asked whether he had reconsidered his position on
“I think we are looking at a far more fragmented political landscape historically… we are also looking at considerable volatility in voters because I was just watching this morning, people getting elected today who didn’t get elected in local elections six months ago, so that’s interesting that people are quite volatile from election to election,” the Fianna Fail leader added.
“That said, one’s policies and one’s principles don’t change overnight, and there are serious policy issues and for any government to sustain into the future. There has to be a coherent sustainable programme for government that can be implemented and delivered.
“There is significant incompatibility in terms of the policy platforms of ourselves and Sinn Fein. We just have to put that marker down. People have one good feat and will win well in terms of different constituencies, I respect that, I acknowledge that, but our policies, our positions and principles haven’t changed overnight or in 24 hours.
“But what is important is that the country comes first, after the last general election, we did facilitate the formation of a functioning government and I think there is an onus and an obligation on all to ensure that such a functioning government is formed after this.”