Taoiseach speaks of ‘re­gret’ at Fitz­patrick de­ci­sion

The Argus - - NEWS -

THE de­ci­sion by Pe­ter Fitz­patrick to re­sign from Fine Gael and served the rest of his cur­rent Dail term as an in­de­pen­dent prompted a pub­lic state­ment from An Taoiseach Leo Varad­kar last week.

Mr. Varad­kar said: ‘I am sorry to hear that Pe­ter Fitz­patrick TD has de­cided to re­sign from the Fine Gael Par­lia­men­tary Party.

I know that he has been un­happy for some time and was a strong op­po­nent of hold­ing a ref­er­en­dum on the Eight Amend­ment. I spoke to Pe­ter a few weeks ago when he de­cided not to seek a nom­i­na­tion to con­test the next Gen­eral Elec­tion as a Fine Gael can­di­date. ‘

He added: ‘At the time, he con­firmed that he would con­tinue to sit, act and vote as a Fine Gael TD un­til the end of his man­date. I re­gret that he has since changed his mind.’

The Taoiseach also high­lighted the new ad­di­tion to the party ticket in Louth.

‘Fine Gael is con­fi­dent that it will re­tain its two seats in the Louth con­stituency. Cllr John McGa­hon has been se­lected to run along­side Fer­gus O’Dowd TD.’

Deputy Fitz­patrick has since spo­ken of his po­si­tion as an In­de­pen­dent for the re­main­der of the Dail term, say­ing that he would be pre­pared to vote with the gov­ern­ment, ‘if it helped the squeezed mid­dle.’

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