County council chairman John Brassil is based in the north of the constituency, while Norma Moriarty is based in the south. Photograph: David Sleator

Council chairman John Brassil selected to run at weekend convention

Senator David Norris: disgraceful to claim that the Government was anti-child. There was an “offensive and bullying’’ tone involved in the criticism. Photograph: David Norris

Frances Fitzgerald: Rejects criticism saying children’s welfare turns on good parenting

Former Fianna Fáil minister of state John O’Leary  has claimed a meeting he had with Charlie Haughey led him to believe the former taoiseach was aware of the tapping of journalists’ telephones

John O’Leary says in his memoirs he formed the view after meeting with Haughey

Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Seán Sherlock has said that the use of Shannon Airport by the US is compatible with the State’s policy of neutrality, in response to a bill proposed by Independent TD Mick Wallace. File photograph: Frank Miller/The Irish Times

Seán Sherlock claims use of Shannon Airport is compatible with policy of neutrality

Independent TD Tommy Broughan has called for the establishment of a permanent commission  to research levels of pay and wealth in the State as part of his High Pay and Wealth Commission Bill. Photograph: Eric Luke/The Irish Times

Broughan moves High Pay and Wealth Commission Bill to monitor income levels

Colm Keaveney:  said a report had revealed that 3,000 “vulnerable children” were on a  mental health services waiting list, with 400 waiting for longer than one year. Photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

Joan Burton tells Colm Keaveney that child mental health services a Government priority

 Mary Lou McDonald said it seemed Labour was about to become Irish Water’s debt collector. Photograph: Eric Luke

Sinn Féin deputy leader challenges Tánaiste on collection of unpaid charges

Maureen O’Sullivan: said certain people were not allowed to register on the Live Register as unemployed, which meant they did not have access to various job-activation programmes, education and training

Tánaiste says Low Pay Commission to report before end of July

Thomas Pringle: said the east region could not continue to sustain the migration rate into it, which was happening because of the absence of jobs in the rest of the country

Independent TD Thomas Pringle calls for greater concentration on regions

Mary Lou McDonald said it seemed Labour was to become Irish Water’s debt collector, “sticking your hand into the pockets of families who are struggling to provide for their children or to pay their mortgage or rent’’. Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill/The Irish Times.

Sinn Féin deputy leader asks Joan Burton if she supports moves to collect unpaid charges

Fianna Fáil Leader Micheál Martin:  “To add insult to injury, the independence and autonomy of Leader and rural development companies has been fatally undermined by the Government.”  Photograph: Gareth Chaney Collins

Enda Kenny says OECD had recommended a more integrated approach to dealing with those kind of funds

Minister of State Joe McHugh said patients should not have to attend hospital unnecessarily, with all the added stresses and possible complications that could be involved.

Fine Gael senator calls for more community intervention teams

Paul Murphy TD said Minister Alan Kelly was “swaggering around the place like Nelson from the Simpsons, threatening to rob people’s lunch money’’.  Photograph: Gareth Chaney Collins

Gerry Adams and Paul Murphy renew criticism of charges

Taoiseach Enda Kenny told the Dáil that the Cabinet will consider proposals from Minister Alan Kelly in relation to legislation for people who refuse to pay water charges. Photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times.

Paul Murphy accuses Coalition of engaging in ‘an arrogant and bullying approach’

John O’Leary (left),  a Fianna Fáil TD for Kerry South from 1966 to 1997 and a minister of state from 1977 to 1979, with Charles Haughey. Mr O’Leary says in his memoirs that Haughey could be vindictive and many of his supporters were thugs. Photograph: On The Doorsteps, Memoirs of a long-serving TD.

Ex-Fianna Fáil TD and junior minister John O’Leary recalls former taoiseach in memoir

FF leader describes controversy as ‘defining moment’ for Hiqa

Senator Ronan Mullen: legislation facilitates fundamental attack on child’s rights. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

Minister for Justice insists legislation in children’s best interests

Taoiseach Enda Kenny has said he cannot indicate when the Portlaoise hospital report will be published. Photograph: EPA

FF leader claims controversy ‘a very defining moment’ for Hiqa’s independence

John O’Donoghue: his decision not to seek a Fianna Fáil nomination for the next general election clears the way for the  party to run two candidates. Photograph: David Sleator

John O’Donoghue ‘was not wanted on the ticket by the party nationally’, says FF source

Tánaiste Joan Burton has said she hopes the report of the Fennelly commission on events leading to the departure of Martin Callinan as Garda commissioner will be made available as soon as possible. She said she understands the Taoiseach is of the same view. Photograph: Eric Luke / The Irish Times.

Fianna Fáil leader accuses Enda Kenny of hiding over inquiry into Martin Callinan departure

Enda Kenny described Liam O’Neill as ‘a very astute political analyst’. Photograph: Brian Lawless/PA Wire

Taoiseach says he was respected by politicians and political writers

Independent Senator Fidelma Healy-Eames has suggested that passing the marriage equality referendum could lead to the end of Mothers’ Day.

Independent Senator Fidelma Healy Eames makes suggestion on Twitter on Sunday

Campaign co-ordinator Helen Lowry, of the Migrant Rights Centre Ireland (MRCI) said  regularising undocumented migrants in Ireland would strengthen the Government’s case for the Irish in the US. Photograph: Eric Luke/The Irish Times.

Migrants living in Ireland seek status similar to what Taoiseach is seeking for Irish in US

Micheál Martin: suggested the Government give serious consideration to establishing a commission of inquiry into the allegations aired on ‘Spotlight’.

Mary Lou McDonald under pressure in bitter and heated exchanges

Kerry TD Tom Fleming said Save Rural Ireland had met TDs and Senators to express their views on rural Ireland’s continuing demise. Photograph: Don MacMonagle

Independent Tom Fleming warns about the continuing decline of rural Ireland

 Minister for Health Leo Varadkar introduced emergency legislation.

Fianna Fail Sen ator Diarmuid Wilson calls for major debate on illegal drugs

Richard Boyd Barrett said there was an irony in the No side’s argument that they wanted to protect children. Photograph: Alan Betson

Clare Daly asks Dáil: ‘How could anyone favour inequality?’

Fianna Fáil leader Micheal Martin: said banks were not trying to get people ‘to engage’. Photograph: Eric Luke.

FF leader disagrees with Noonan’s observation banks trying to get people ‘to engage’

A former Dublin ‘headshop’ in 2010. Photograph: Bryan O’Brien/The Irish Times

Leo Varadkar responds to court decision lifting ban on ‘headshop’ and other drugs

Minister for Health Leo Varadkar: the Bill allowed gay men and women, for the first time, to be equal citizens in their own country. “No exceptions, no caveats, no conditions,” he added. Photograph: Gareth Chaney Collins

Frances Fitzgerald asks why marriage should be for some and not for others

Minister for Education Jan O’Sullivan: she said the task force consisted of a number of highly respected members from inside, and external to, NUI Galway. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Minister says university has set up a task force to advise it on policies and procedures

Taoiseach Enda Kenny has said he would like to see the banks doing more for people in mortgage difficulty. Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill / The Irish Times

Taoiseach tells Dáil further measures due next month to help families in difficulty

At the launch in Dublin of the Yes Equality campaign urging a Yes  vote in the marriage equality referendum were (from left), Joe Hayes,  Anne McGlynn,   Ian McGlynn, Joe Hayes  and John McGlynn. Photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

Vote gives Irish people ‘chance to secure true equality for lesbian and gay people’

Independent TD Finian McGrath: ‘Very violent people had to be locked up in prison’

Oireachtas justice committee chairman David Stanton TD tells of horror of Cork prison

Members of the Defence Forces on Bray seafront before a rehearsal for the annual Air Spectacular show. Photograph: Matt Kavanagh

Deenihan denies Ireland takes ‘isolationist’ approach to international affairs

Labour leader predicts party will be ready for a tough election battle

Labour delegates overwhelmingly passed an emergency moton opposing the sale of Aer Lingus to IAG under the terms currently offered. Photo credit: Brian Lawless/PA Wire

TDs back emergency motion at party conference

Minister for Employment Ged Nash announced the setting up of a new low pay commission earlier this week. Photo: Gareth Chaney Collins

New low pay committee to be set up to discuss potential living wage campaign

Minister for the Environment Alan Kelly and Tanaiste Joan Burton at the Labour Party conference at Killarney on Saturday morning . Photograph: Cyril Byrne/ The Irish Times

Minister for the Environment says some landlords feel they can get away with scandalous increases in rent

John Kellegher from Cork North Central seen among a crowd at the Labour Party conference in Killarney on Friday, where Labour Women called for the appeal of the eighth amendment. Photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times.

Senator Ivana Bacik says 150,000 women travelled for abortion since 1983 amendment

Labour TD Arthur Spring has told the party’s conference that Labour brought Fine Gael with it on many issues. File  photograph: David Sleator/The Irish Times

Kerry TD says party introduced topics like same-sex marriage to its Coalition partner

Minister for the Environment and deputy leader Alan Kelly says Labour will run as an independent party at the next general election, with its own policies. Photograph: Cyril Byrne /The Irish Times

Minister does not rule out election voting pact but says Labour will run independently

Lorraine Higgins said estates faced issues ranging from building companies in receivership to financial institutions holding bonds that could not be accessed because of the preferential creditors’ rules.

Senator Lorraine Higgins says situation replicated around the country

Dr James Reilly: “If a bully tries to intimidate you with actions, you should stand firm and be true to what you believe to be right.”

Minister says Ireland close to becoming first EU country to introduce plain packaging

Independent TD Tom Fleming: ‘The inner parts of towns are becoming denuded of people because of the growth of large multiples on the outskirts.’ Photograph: David Sleator

Many rural towns and villages left behind, says Kerry South TD

Micheál Martin: “More people at risk of dying in our hospitals before the Government decides to get to grips with it”

Fianna Fáil health policy ‘mythical’, says Taoiseach

Gerry Adams told the Dáil on Wednesday the total trolley patients figure of 479 included 40 in Our Lady of Lourdes hospital in his Louth constituency. Photograph: Cyril Byrne / THE IRISH TIMES

Enda Kenny concedes issue ‘a matter of challenge’ for Government in Dáil exchanges

Minister of State for Equality Aodhán Ó Ríordáin: Introduced the Redress for Women Resident in Certain Institutions Bill 2014, providing free health services for former residents

Only minority of women single parents, says Minister of State Aodhán Ó Ríordáin

Taoiseach Enda Kenny: he said it was a sensitive case which had to be investigated properly and he would like to hear back from a Tusla investigation before making a judgment on it. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times

FF leader asked Enda Kenny for inquiry into handling of incident reported 10 years ago

Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin: said there had been criticism of the Health Service Executive and the school’s board of management. Photograph: Eric Luke

Enda Kenny says he will report to Dáil when Tusla investigation completed

Tom Fleming (Independent):    The technical group’s representative in the Dáil said  many staff in the sector were on low wages and had temporary contracts. Photograph:  Don MacMonagle

Independent TD Tom Fleming raises low pay and high cost for parents

 Aengus O’Snodaigh: ‘It does not take six  months to learn how to stack shelves.’ Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

SF TD Aengus Ó Snodaigh claims scheme is causing low pay and under-employment

Derek Brockwell, who was recaptured by police outside a pub in Belfast city centre. Irish Prison Service/PA

FF TD asks why previous requests for armed escort for Derek Brockwell were declined

Fianna Fáil justice spokesman Niall Collins said a previous request for armed escorts for Derek Brockwell, who escaped custody after stabbing two prison officers on Tuesday,  had been declined.  Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons/The Irish Times.

Minister for Communications Alex White says incident an operational matter

There had been an “epidemic of burglaries’’ in Stepaside, south Dublin, since the closure of the local garda station, Independent TD Shane Ross told the Dail.

Independent TD Shane Ross calls for reopening of garda station

 Enda Kenny: “These reforms aim to provide the necessary supports to lone parents to help them access a range of education, training and employment programmes, develop a skill-set and, ultimately, secure employment and financial independence.’’  Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin claims they are an insult and Thatcherite

Paschal Mooney criticises Ibec and US Chamber of Commerce over tobacco firm threat

Minister for Health Leo Varadkar: ‘strong case’ for training fire crews to do ambulance service work. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Minister for Health responds to Senator John Kelly on shortage of paramedics

Paschal Donohoe: said there were problems with blanket speed limits and those best able to define a residential area were the local authorities and councillors. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

Paschal Donohoe says Dáil committee will consider ‘Jake’s law’ in new legislation

File image of Taoieach Enda Kenny in the Dáil

Taoiseach says banks will be called in shortly by Cabinet sub-committee

Tánaiste Joan Burton accused Socialist Party TD Ruth Coppinger of calling the gardaí “dogs’’ which she strongly denied. Photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times

Socialist TD Ruth Coppinger denies she referred to gardaí in Tallaght arrests as ‘dogs’

Ruth Coppinger: said she was alluding to calling  off “the dogs of war” on people in Jobstown and was not referring to gardaí. Photograph: Aidan Crawley

Socialist Party TD says she was merely using ’figure of speech’

Socialist Party TD Ruth Coppinger speaking in the Dáil on Thursday. Photograph: The Irish Times

Socialist TD says neither Ahern or Haughey ‘for all their sins . . went and called out the dogs’

Sen Ronan Mullen: said some babies diagnosed with fatal foetal abnormalities went on to live for months and even years. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

Heated exchanges in Seanad debate on proposed fatal foetal abnormality Bill

Taoiseach Enda Kenny said the hospital trolley problem was not something which could be fixed overnight and the Government did not have endless resources. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

FF and SF leaders challenge Enda Kenny on the state of the health services

The Taoiseach and Gerry Adams disagreed on the number of patients on trolleys, with Adams saying the number was 472.

Taoiseach says ‘if it was a question of money, it would have been fixed years ago’

Minister for the Arts Heather Humphreys says the new governance framework “ensures appropriate reporting and accounting to the Minister and the Oireachtas”. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Heather Humphreys admitted there were problems in the past

Micheál Martin: “In some hospitals the situation is truly chaotic and it is extremely stressful for many patients throughout the country.” Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Taoiseach accuses Fianna Fáil of leaving country in catastrophic situation

 Clare Daly TD, who said to Enda Kenny: “How dare you attempt to have the arrogance to interpret the Constitution when it is only something our courts can do?”. Photograph: Gareth Chaney Collins

Sinn Féin abstains, Ferris defies Labour party whip and three FF TDs vote for legislation

The Dáil is voting on the TD Clare Daly’s Bill allowing for abortion in cases of fatal foetal abnormalities.

Fatal foetal abnormality Bill defeated as Sinn Féin abstained

The issue of a legal termination in the case of fatal foetal abnormality should be dealt with by the next government, Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport Paschal Donohoe has said. Mr Donohoe was speaking to journalists in Dublin on Monday in advance of Tuesday’s Dáil vote on Independent TD Clare Daly’s Private Member’s Bill

Paschal Donohoe believes current law is causing suffering and should be changed

Some patients undergoing medical treatment were being referred back to waiting lists, Fianna Fáil TD Charlie McConalogue has told the Dáil.

Fianna Fáil TD highlights case of young mother awaiting surgery

Senator Katherine Zappone: said the three-day rule regarding part-time work simply did not correspond to the reality of people’s lives. Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill/The Irish Times

Minister of State Ann Phelan says changing it would have cost implications

Sinn Féin deputy leaderM ary Lou McDonald: ‘Every day families with children and single people continue to present as homeless.’ Photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times

Shrine created by public to his memory in nearby doorway now cleared away

Independent TD Tom Fleming said court proceedings had led to “an alarming 46 per cent of cases” resulting in an order for repossession or sale of a property. Photograph:  Don MacMonagle

Taoiseach claims Government action on mortgages the most radical in years

Fianna Fáil Senator Diarmuid Wilson has called for a major education programme on the danger of alcohol abuse in secondary schools. Photograph: Getty Images

Government’s proposal to end below-cost sales gets cross-party welcome

Gerry Adams accuses Government of having dismissive attitude to Oireachtas

Minister of State Kevin Humphreys, who said the amendment was practical and reasonable. Photograph: Davd Sleator/The Irish Times

Senators claim deficiencies in the Gender Recognition Bill 2014

Screengrab of Ceann Comhairle Seán Barrett addressing the Dáil this afternoon.

Ceann Comhairle tells Dáil he came under no pressure over motion

Minister for Health Leo Varadkar speaking at the launch of the NCCP cancer report ‘A Strategy for Cancer Control in Irland’. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Inevitable ‘boom’ expected because of relatively young population

Ceann Comhairle Sean Barrett faces the prospect of a motion of no confidence moved by Fianna Fáil. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Ceann Comhairle says Opposition entitled to question his decisions but he stands by ruling

Labour Senator John Gilroy said as public representatives they had a responsibility to explain their positions on different policy issues.

Fine Gael Senator says politicians slow to take credit for good work done

Tánaiste Joan Burton: pointed to where Irish health service was performing well. Photograph: Aidan Crawley/The Irish Times

TD Tom Fleming said doctors denied pay had been agreed, despite Varadkar report

Seán Barrett: his colleague said, “The Ceann Comhairle formed the view that, while the motion could be moved in the house, it was not in order for debate because of the risk of encroachment by the Dáil on proceedings before the High Court.’’ Photograph: Frank Miller/The Irish Times

Barrett said it was not in order for Dáil debate as it would encroach on Shatter court case

An FOI from the Tánaiste’s department has revealed the Department of Social Protection is seeking extra resources  to run the water conservation grant scheme. Photograph: Frank Miller /The Irish Times

FOI reveals department is seeking extra resources to run water conservation grant scheme

 Ceann Comhairle Seán Barrett: Taoiseach says his ruling is irreversible. Photograph: Alan Betson

Ceann Comhairle says debate on setting up of commission of investigation cannot be held because matter is sub judice

Taoiseach says Ceann Comhairle’s sub judice ruling preventing debate irreversible

Taoiseach Enda Kenny in the Dáil. File image: Oireachtas screengrab.

Taoiseach accuses Adams of ‘economic ballyhoo’ in sharp exchanges

Michael Fitzmaurice: “Statistics I received in the past week indicate 8 per cent of people who work in the public service are in receipt of family income supplement’’

Independent TD Michael Fitzmaurice says middle Ireland hit by levies and USC

Simon Harris: a key to any discussions on the Greek debt programme will be the issue of debt sustainability

Result of Greek election raised by Independent Senator Paul Bradford

Ruth Coppinger: “Rather than showing solidarity over the years with the other bullied pupils in the troika classroom they joined in their mockery, with even the Minister for Finance making snide remarks about feta cheese two years ago.

Socialist Party TD Ruth Coppinger claims Government creating distance with Greece

 Minister for Justice  Frances Fitzgerald and  Garda Commissioner Noirín O Sullivan. A senior Garda is investigating  a claim that gardaí and the HSE failed to respond to a reported assault on a woman. Photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times.

Minister for Justice tells Dáil senior Garda reviewing case after victim was in contact

End Kenny has confirmed no decision has been made about the offer for the sale of the national airline in the wake of the offer from IAG  which owns British Airways, along with Spanish airlines Iberia and Vueling. Photograph: Simon Dawson/Bloomberg

Fianna Fáil and Sinn Féin leaders advise against sale for jobs and connectivity

“It is a load of nonsense and, frankly, more irritating than anything else,” says Independent TD Michael Lowry. Photograph: Brian Arthur/Press 22

Independent TD responds to reappointment controversy

Minister for Transport Paschal Donohoe has said any protests outside his Dublin home were “unacceptable” and a matter for An Garda Síochána. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons/The Irish Times.

IASS group warn ‘similar activities’ will continue until pension issue resolved

Minister for Transport Paschal Donohoe: “I will brief the Cabinet on what is happening at the moment. A number of my colleagues have already expressed different views and considerations that need to be considered.’’

Paschal Donohoe rules out a decision being made at tomorrow’s Cabinet meeting

Eamon Timmins of Age Action Ireland said the current hospital crisis highlighted the need to address the health needs of older people. His agency, as a national charity for older people, believed a major State challenge was the provision of health and social care supports for them in their communities. File photograph: Jonathan Brady/PA Wire

Payment ‘condemns people to living last third of lives on income just above poverty line’

Tánaiste Joan Burton: ‘I go into very well-off schools, fee-paying schools . . . Deputy McDonald would be familiar with them.’ Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Dáil sketch: Joan Burton urges teacher unions to think about ‘our precious children’

Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Brendan Howlin: changes ‘more than merely cosmetic’. Photograph: Sam Boal/Photocall Ireland

Government ‘dropped the ball’ in some instances, says Labour Senator John Whelan

Senator Katherine Zappone:  said it  was regrettable it had taken successive Irish governments more than 20 years to legislate for gender recognition. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times

Katherine Zappone acknowledges role played by Tánaiste Joan Burton and civil servants in preparing Bill

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