“Many very candid positions have been stated in private which have yet to be repeated in public.”

So the Fianna Fail Parliamentary party went into conclave at 7 this evening now that they have failed to attract any support from the independents. But it clear now that Micheal Martin is taking any deal he might have done with them off the table.  At this stage that does two things.

It quickens the endgame and it is probably clear enough to absolve FF of any responsibility for where that endgame now lands the 32nd Dail. If the independents (some gene pool FF) thought to hedge their bets was the best option, in nixing a deal Martin now leaves them nowhere to go but FG.

That is if the 32nd Dail is not then to collapse into an election for the 33rd Dail. As I’ve said all along, I genuinely believe no one (including FF) actually wants that. But more importantly, no one wants the blame for triggering it.

Screen Shot 2016-04-14 at 19.06.47I suspect this passage in Martin’s speech will make particularly ominous reading for the Independent deputies…

Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty

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