Coveney In Clare As FG Leadership Fight Gets Underway

Simon Coveney will press the flesh with Clare Fine Gael members tonight as he seeks to become the party’s new leader.

The Housing Minister will attend the Clare Fine Gael AGM in Ennis tonight, as he looks to make up ground on leadership rival Leo Varadkar.

Minister Varadkar has secured the backing of Ennistymon Councillor Martin Conway.


Deputy Joe Carey is expected to announce his decision in the coming days, while Minister of State Pat Breen has also held off on making a decision.

A number of Clare Fine Gael Councillors also said they were undecided when contacted by Clare FM yesterday.

Local Fianna Fáil TD Timmy Dooley says the new leader must get down to work straight away:

Meanwhile, there are just over 24 hours before the nominations for Fine Gael leadership close.

The party’s national executive outlined the final plans for the contest at a meeting last night and confirmed that an electoral college system will operate for the first time.

There’ll be four regional hustings followed by four days for members to vote, with the results being announced on Friday the 2nd of June after the Parliamentary Party votes.

At the moment, Leo Varadkar has a slight edge on Simon Coveney, despite saying he’s not formally launching his campaign until tomorrow.

Education Minister Richard Bruton says while he admires them both, he’ll be voting for Leo.