Marc MacSharry’s return to Fianna Fáil delayed after councillor makes complaint
19th October 2022
Fianna Fáil has delayed Marc MacSharry’s return to the parliamentary party following a complaint by a party colleague.
Mr MacSharry was due to return after colleagues tabled a motion seeking his readmittance following his resignation over Fine Gael deputy leader Simon Coveney’s botched handling of the ‘champagne-gate’ controversy
However, at Wednesday’s parliamentary party meeting Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin said it will not be happening this week as an issue had arisen.
It is understood a complaint by a Fianna Fáil councillor which Mr MacSharry denies is at the centre of the delay in allowing the TD re-join the party.
On Wednesday evening, the Taoiseach faced a backlash from party colleagues over the decision to delay the readmission of his long-time critic.
Senior party figures, including Barry Cowen, Diarmuid Wilson and Aidan Davitt, raised concerns about Mr Martin’s refusal to allow Mr MacSharry re-join the party.
Two weeks ago, Mr Cowen and Mr Wilson proposed Mr MacSharry re-join the party but this was objected to by Agriculture Minister Charlie McConalogue.
At the meeting, Mr Martin said the Sligo-Leitrim TD’s readmittance would have to be proposed by Government Chief Whip Jack Chambers.
Senior Fianna Fáil TDs said the Taoiseach’s decision not to readmit Mr MacSharry was a “huge mistake”.
“No one can understand why he won’t let him back in and the way he’s going it’s destroying Marc’s reputation,” a senior party source said.
“Fianna Fáil is a joke at the moment and no one can understand what’s going on with this,” another Fianna Fáil source said.
The Irish Independent reported last week the decision to readmit Mr MacSharry to the parliamentary party followed a heated conversation between the rebel TD and Mr Martin.
The long-time political foes clashed during a tense phone call ahead of Fianna Fáíl’s parliamentary party meeting last week.
The Taoiseach phoned Mr MacSharry to discuss a proposal for him to rejoin the parliamentary party.
Mr Martin called the self-exiled TD to ask him about returning to the party and discuss comments he made in his resignation letter in which he described the Fianna Fáil leader as “totalitarian”.