Walsh not to join Lucinda Creighton’s political alliance
By Kernan Andrews
Galway West TD Brian Walsh will not be joining any of his fellow Fine Gael dissidents who voted against the Protection of Life During pregnancy Bill, in any new political alliance.
Five Fine Gael TDs - Brian Walsh, Lucinda Creighton, Billy Timmins, Terence Flanagan, and Peter Mathews - were expelled from the parliamentary party for voting against the Government’s Abortion Bill. Since then speculation has been rife that the five are set to form a new political party or some kind of technical grouping within the Dáil.
Dep Walsh had held a formal meeting with the proposed new political alliance earlier this week but on Wednesday, in an email sent to the other four ex-FG parliamentary party members, he stated he would not be joining them.
In the email, Dep Walsh pointed to a number of proposed policy platforms for the new grouping with which he could not agree.
He said the group’s “anti-Government standpoint” on the forthcoming Seanad referendum was “at odds with the electoral platform on which we campaigned as Fine Gael candidates in 2011”.
Dep Walsh pointed out that he has had a “good personal and working relationship” with Taoiseach Enda Kenny. Dep Walsh also said the Taoiseach “continues to retain my respect and support”.
“That relationship has been damaged by the vote last July but I do not wish to further compromise it through my participation in a group that would have the potential to destabilise the work of Fine Gael in Government,” he wrote.
Such a view may be further borne out by Dep Walsh’s view, in the email to Dep Creighton and others, when he wrote: “I have no desire to participate in a grouping that would have the potential to compromise the stability of the Government and its continual efforts towards national recovery.”