“I am not saying I am open to amendments but I will be listening to the concerns of TDs,” Mr Flanagan said. Photograph:  Niall Carson/PA Wire

Minister for Justice known to have some reservations about proposed new system

“There is ongoing public concern about the investigation and prosecution of white collar crime.” Photograph: Getty Images

New law to grant immunity to whistleblowers could form part of package

Political gamble: Máire Whelan is formally appointed to the Court of Appeal by President Michael D Higgins and Taoiseach Leo Varadkar. Photograph: Colin Keegan/Collins

Pat Leahy: Leo Varadkar has to break the mould to emulate Blair and Macron

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar  with Theresa May and Mark Rutte from the Netherlands at the European Council meeting in Brussels.Photograph:   Peter Cavanagh

New Taoiseach details meetings he had in Brussels with various European leaders

Theresa May and Leo Varadkar  at a European Council meeting in Brussels. Photograph: John Thysj/Getty

Taoiseach says talks will not be conducted as Theresa May seems to think

An Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar, during a photo opportunity with the Ministers of State. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill / The Irish Times

Taoiseach says seven out of 12 female TDs who support govt are ministers

French economy minister Bruno Le Maire with president of the European Central Bank Mario Draghi in Luxembourg earlier this month. Photograph: John Thys/AFP/Getty Images

Mario Draghi tells EU leaders slow price growth is reason to keep rates unchanged

The three sides to the Brexit process – the British, the Irish and the EU – have all spoken of “flexible and imaginative solutions” to the problems the UK’s exit from the bloc poses for both sides of the Border.

Political task will focus on future Border arrangements

A rift has opened between Leo Varadkar and Micheál Martin over the appointment of Máire Whelan to the Court of Appeal. Photographs: The Irish Times

Taoiseach attempts to rebuild trust as FF chief moves party closer to election footing

EU summit: Theresa May, the British PM, arrives for the talks. Photograph: Gonzalo Fuentes/Reuters

British PM comes close to European stance as Taoiseach flags ‘open door’ for UK return

Taoiseach  Leo Varadkar arrives for a European People’s Party  leaders meeting ahead of the European Council meeting in Brussels. Photograph: EPA/Julien Warnand

‘Will the new guy be on time?’ asked a Swedish journalist. ‘The old guy was always late.’

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar (L) shakes hands with European Union Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker. Photograph: AFP/Getty Images

‘We don’t want them to leave the EU,’ Varadkar says on first summit trip

Maire Whelan who was appointed to the Court of Appeal by President Michael D Higgins at Aras an Uachtarain. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Taoiseach says there is ‘no reason’ why confidence and supply deal should fall

No to Brexit: a remain sign in Northern Ireland. A hard Brexit is expected to result in higher prices in the Republic, as UK multinationals pass on the cost of a weaker pound to consumers.  Photograph: Paul Faith/AFP/Getty

Taoiseach to urge talks progress as ESRI says main impact would be on labour market

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar: Will he rescind Máire Whelan’s appointment  and reopen the process? Photograph: Brian Lawless/PA Wire

Leo Varadkar response to controversy over Court of Appeal role will signal political path

Máire Whelan served as attorney general for six years and was a close ally of former taoiseach Enda Kenny. Photograph: The Irish Times

Taoiseach insists proper procedures followed and candidate highly qualified for role

Leo Varadkar must deal with controversy over the appointment of  Máire Whelan to a senior judicial position.

Minister calls for review despite Taoiseach saying ‘correct procedures followed’

Former attorney general Máire Whelan’s evidence supported Enda Kenny’s account of Martin Callinan’s departure from the position of Garda commissioner. File photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

Former attorney general gave different accounts about extent of Garda taping

Outgoing Attorney General Máire Whelan, who was a close ally of former taoiseach Enda Kenny. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Cabinet to discuss Enda Kenny’s decision on Court of Appeal role next week

Declaring that he was ‘elected to lead but I promise to serve’, Leo Varadkar recommitted himself to the Coalition arrangement. Photograph Nick Bradshaw

The Taoiseach promotes a new generation of Fine Gael as he reshuffles his Cabinet

Outgoing Attorney General Máire Whelan has been nominated to the Court of Appeal. Photograph: Colin Keegan/Collins Dublin

Opposition criticises nomination of outgoing Attorney General to Court of Appeal

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar.  Photograph:  Stephen Collins

A who’s who of all the faces in new Taoiseach’s Cabinet

 Leo Varadkar meets secretary general to the President Art O’Leary at Áras an Uachtaráin on Wednesday. Photograph Nick Bradshaw.

Cabinet personnel largely unchanged but a younger Fine Gael generation steps forward

A pledge to make Ireland a “republic of opportunity” and a limited Cabinet reshuffle will be on Leo Varadkar’s agenda upon becoming taoiseach.  Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons/The Irish Times

Fine Gael TDs await incoming changes to ministries under new taoiseach

DUP leader Arlene Foster

Preparations in place for Friday meeting in Dublin with Stormont and Brexit on agenda

Enda Kenny leaving Government Buildings following his resignation as Taoiseach. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Overall, it’s hard to argue that Kenny hasn’t produced results for his people

Arlene Foster and Theresa May: talks between the DUP and British PM are expected to see the party support the Conservatives to form a government. Photograph: Charles McQuillan/PA Wire

Stick to Belfast Agreement as London, Stormont talks continue - Flanagan

Fine Gael leader Leo Varadkar: intends to increase capital investment in preference to leaving money sit in a fund. A big expansion in  roads, schools, public transport, broadband and housing is emerging as a key theme. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

New Fine Gael chief plans significant expansion in capital spending

Ireland’s next taoiseach: Leo Varadkar’s life will change for ever when he accepts the seal of office on Wednesday. Photograph: Ramsey Cardy/Sportsfile/Corbis via Getty

Leo Varadkar is about to take on a highly complex role that requires more than power

Leo Varadkar with current Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Paschal Donohoe. Photograph: Sam Boal/RollingNews.ie

Merging the Departments of Finance and Public Expenditure could be the wrong move

Jeremy Corbyn  gestures as he leaves his home in London on Friday. A Labour approach to Brexit would probably pay more attention to Northern Ireland issues. Photograph: Bloomberg

Start date for Brexit negotiations with European Commission now in doubt

Fine Gael leader Leo Varadkar has declined to comment on a request from Simon Coveney not to penalise opponents when he picks his cabinet. Photograph: Alan Betson

New Fine Gael leader declines to comment on rival’s request not to penalise opponents

Simon Coveney and Leo Varadkar embrace after Mr Varadkar won the Fine Gael party race: Mr Varadkar is on course to become Ireland’s 13th taoiseach.  Photograph: Aidan Crawley

Victorious Leo Varadkar says ‘torch of leadership passes to a new generation’

Leo Varadkar and Paschal Donohoe: next generation. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Varadkar faces a daunting task, working in a conditional, shallow, demanding time

Leo Varadkar impressed many with his command of policy areas beyond his ministerial brief during the hustings debate.  Photograph: Brian Lawless/PA

Brexit, Northern Ireland, pay talks and An Garda Síochána are key issues to tackle

Fine Gael party member Frankie Mulqueen casts his vote in the leadership election on Monday night in the Red Cow hotel in Dublin. Photograph: Dave Meehan

Parliamentary party voting begins this morning with a result expected before 6pm

Leo Varadkar and Simon Coveney  at the start of the first of four nights on the Hustings in the Red Cow Hotel in Dublin last week. Photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times

We sit down with Leo Varadkar and Simon Coveney

Leo Varadkar launching his campaign bid to be Fine Gael party leader. Photograph: Clodagh Kilcoyne/Reuters

Leadership candidate on his ‘right-wing’ image, abortion and Coveney’s values

Simon Coveney: “The membership are more interested in what the party stands for and less interested in their own careers.” Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Coveney talks about Varadkar’s head start, careerist politicians and his inclusive outlook

Minister for Transport Shane Ross: “One of the great flaws in the appointment of judges in the past has been that politicians have been far too involved in it.” Photograph: Alan Betson

Cabinet approves long-awaited Bill to reform judicial appointments

Final report of the all-party Committee on the Future of Healthcare says health budgets will have to be significantly raised with a guaranteed €380-€465 million increase every year to fund increased services. Photograph: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire

Committee calls for removal of private practice from public hospitals

Fine Gael leadership candidates Leo Varadkar and Simon Coveney greet each other at the start of the first of four nights on the hustings. Photograph: Alan Betson

Leo Varadkar has commanding lead over Simon Coveney as voting begins

Garda Commissioner Nóirín O’Sullivan has been the subject of a series of controversies. File photograph: Cyril Byrne

‘Irish Times’/Ipsos MRBI opinion poll finds nearly 60% want Nóirín O’Sullivan to step down

Fine Gael Leadership Candidates Leo Varadkar and Simon Coveney at the start of the first of four campaign hustings, at the Red Cow Hotel in Dublin on Thursday. Photograph: Alan Betson

Pat Leahy: Fine Gael leadership front-runner sceptical of support deal

Voters are also overwhelmingly against legalising socio-economic reasons as grounds for abortion. Photographs: The Irish Times

Most reject Citizens’ Assembly view that abortion on request should be available in the early stages of pregnancy

Justice Mary Laffoy, chair at The Citizens’ Assembly. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Analysis: Deciding how much access there is to abortion is a fraught business for politicians

Fine Gael now leads Fianna Fáil for the first time since the general election last year according to the latest Irish Times/Ipsos MRBI opinion poll

Enda Kenny’s 43% personal satisfaction rating is highest since 2011

Voters favour Simon Coveney on trust and believe he is more “in touch with ordinary people”. But they favour Mr Varadkar to “deliver real change”.

Opinion poll also reveals that FG ahead of FF for first time since the general election

 Simon Coveney and Leo Varadkar: poll changes the picture, but it isn’t an explosion under the frontrunner.  Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill

Public’s political mood settled but that does not mean they are content

Fine Gael leadership candidates Leo Varadkar and Simon Coveney greet each other in a Dublin hotel at the start of the first of four nights on the hustings. Photograph: Alan Betson

Varadkar says in trying to stand for everyone, the party risked standing for nothing

Among Fine Gael voters 48% would choose Simon Coveney for party leader with 44% opting for Mr Varadkar and 8% undecided.

Minister for Housing holds lead among wider electorate and party members in Fine Gael leadership race

Asked their preferred choice for leader of Fine Gael, 42% of all voters said Simon Coveney, while 37% opted for Leo Varadkar. Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill

Figures undermine Dublin West TD’s claim that he is preferred by the public at large

Labour leader Brendan Howlin. Photograph: Gareth Chaney Collins

Howlin says companies with more than 50 employees should publish all salaries

A banner for Ireland 2023 Rugby World Cup is displayed in the Aviva Stadium. Photograph: Billy Stickland/INPHO

Cabinet sanctions Irish campaign and agrees to pay €139m fee to tournament owners

Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport Shane Ross: refused to agree to judicial appointments last year as he was seeking reforms of the way judges are appointed.  Photograph: Alan Betson

Bill to reform the way judges are appointed will be approved next week, says Shane Ross

Minister for Social Protection Leo Varadkar  launching his policy document for his campaign for the Fine Gael leadership. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Leo Varadkar’s policies more specific than Simon Coveney’s – with clear nod to election

Simon Coveney characterised Leo Varadkar’s policy document as a “list of spending commitments”. Photographs: The Irish Times

Varadkar continues to build strong lead among party’s TDs, Senators and MEPs

 Simon Coveney   took issue with Leo Varadkar’s statement that Fine Gael needs to be for people who get out of bed early in the morning, saying the party needs to represent other people too.  File photograph: Cyril Byrne

Varadkar says Government has to ‘hold the line’ on public sector pay

Leo Varadkar: “Appears to have an unstoppable momentum at this stage.” Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Appearing as candidate of change entails expectation that menu of change will follow

Minister for Social Protection Leo Varadkar with Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Paschal Donohoe on Leo Street in Dublin on Friday. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Defiant Simon Coveney vows to fight despite rival’s near-unassailable lead

Leo Varadkar has not won yet but something huge has to change in the race for him not to win

Front-runner is now likely to be subjected to testing interrogation

Minister for Finance Michael Noonan: sale of 25% stake on the stock market could raise €2.5-€3bn, say analysts. Photograph: Eric Luke

Floating of bailed-out State-owned bank may be Minister’s last key decision in official role

Minister for Social Protection Leo Varadkar: ends day one with support of 31 members of the parliamentary party to Simon Coveney’s 17, with 26 undecided or undeclared.  Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

On day one Simon Coveney lags behind as Fine Gael supporters show their loyalties

Simon Coveney: his efforts on housing and his apparent popularity among the Fine Gael grassroots have closed the gap on Varadkar

Leo Varadkar will try to show in coming days the contest is over before it even begins

Taoiseach Enda Kenny at Government Buildings yesterday: Mr Kenny will remain as Taoiseach until his successor is elected by the Dáil. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Leo Varadkar ahead of Simon Coveney in survey of elected representatives

Enda Kenny at the 1976 Fine Gael ardfheis: His political career spans an extraordinary period in Irish history, one that has witnessed the true transformation of Ireland. Photograph: Peter Thursfield/The Irish Times

Outgoing Taoiseach’s rare political instinct enabled him to rebuild Fine Gael, manage the State during crisis . . . and know when (...)

Some 45 per cent of people have private health insurance cover. Photograph: Alan Betson

Draft reports seek total ‘disentanglement’ of two systems, but FF-FG likely to resist

Taoiseach Enda Kenny at the launch in the Irish Architectural Archive. Photograph: Dave Meehan

Enda Kenny was speaking at launch of latest Irish Times Nealon’s Guide

Liam Irwin of the Revenue Commissioners said that within 10-15 km of the Border there could be “trade facilitation posts” to allow for customs declarations on incoming goods. Photograph: Aidan Crawley

Revenue official says all trade transactions with Britain facing customs declarations

Taoiseach Enda Kenny. Photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

Inside Politics: Government in suspended animation amid speculation over departure plans of Fine Gael leader

Minister for Transport Shane Ross: “perfectly happy with the progress” of the legislation to reform the judicial appointments process, according to a spokeswoman. Photograph: Alan Betson

Shane Ross says he has ‘no problem’ with repeated delays

“Liam Doran, the canny boss of the nurses’ union, exploded onto the airwaves during the chocolates row.” Photograph: Eric Luke

Standing up to vested interests necessary for political system to work

Enda Kenny, Manfred Weber and Martin Kamp at the EPP  meeting in Druids Glen, Wicklow on Friday. Photograph: Don MacMonagle

EPP leader: ‘too little awareness of what Brexit means’

Tony Blair: Jeremy Corbyn facilitated Brexit. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

‘A hard Border would be a disaster, everything must be done to avoid it’

Minister for Justice Frances Fitzgerald and Garda Commissioner Nóirín O Sullivan at Templemore. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

PAC hears commissioner delayed telling Garda audit unit of financial irregularities

Michel Barnier arrives for a meeting with Taoiseach Enda Kenny at Government Buildings: his message was that Ireland had the goodwill of the EU and its determination to make the best deal for this country. Photograph: Paul Faith/WPA Pool/Getty

EU chief Brexit negotiator’s goodwill claims come amid trade and Border uncertainties

Michel Barnier, the EU’s chief Brexit negotiator, addressing TDs and Senators. Photograph: Maxwell

European Union’s chief negotiator reassures Oireachtas that Irish problem is high priority

Taoiseach Enda Kenny addressing the EPP Group conference at Druid’s Glen. Photograph: Don MacMonagle

‘We cannot have a border like before,’ Taoiseach tells European colleagues in Wicklow

Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil TDs have joined together to block a plan to abolish tax relief on private health insurance. File photograph: Getty Images

Independent and Sinn Féin politicians proposed ending benefit for private premiums

European Commission chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier has arrived in Dublin. Photograph: Emilio Naranjo

European Commission’s chief Brexit negotiator to offer assurances on Ireland’s status

EU Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier: delights in pointing out how difficult it will be to disentangle the UK from the EU. Photograph: John Thys/AFP/Getty

Chief Brexit negotiator for European Commission ‘gets’ Ireland but serves many masters

Minister for Public Expenditure Paschal Donohoe has said: ‘The demands on resources available to the State are very, very, very large.’ Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Commission’s report told us little we did not know, but it will influence forthcoming talks

Minister for Transport Shane Ross:  asked Minister for Foreign Affairs Charlie Flanagan if Ireland voted in favour of Saudi Arabia’s election to the UN body on women’s rights recently. Photograph: Alan Betson

Controversial issues to be ‘red-flagged’ to Cabinet after Independent Alliance queries

Finbar O’Brien has been appointed Ambassador to Uganda, and also to Rwanda. He was previously principal development specialist at the Department of Foreign Affairs in Dublin

Diplomats being sent to Ethiopia, Mexico, Uganda, Cyprus, Sweden, Slovenia and Egypt

The Public Service Pay Commission report  says tens of thousands of State employees should contribute more towards their pension arrangements. File photograph: iStockPhoto

ICTU Public Services Committee calls for early talks on recovery of public service pay

Unions would have to vote on any agreement over the summer months

The 148-page document on public pay will form basis of talks

 Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil TDs have expressed alarm at a proposal to completely separate public and private healthcare in the Republic. Photograph: Getty Images

Oireachtas committee is set to vote on a plan to separate public and private services

An overwhelming majority of Irish people wish to remain in the EU. Photograph: John Thys/AFP/Getty Images

Poll finds 57 per cent say Ireland should be part of increased EU defence co-operation

The pay  report is expected to put the net value of the public sector pension at between 12-18 per cent of salary.

Pension reform should be matter for negotiation, says report

Enda Kenny during the summit of EU leaders  in Brussels: the elevation of Irish concerns to European priorities is about as good as we could have hoped for at this stage. Photograph: John Thys/AFP/Getty Images

Brexit and the public finances require at the very least an injection of discipline

Next spring is probably the earliest date a vote could be held on this divisive issue. Photographs: The Irish Times

Scope of potential new legislation and campaign strategies now under consideration

The Department of Finance has said it is ‘not at the point where we are worried’ about the public finances following disappointing exchequer figures. File photograph: iStock

Exchequer returns confirm downward trend as figures €344m below target

What is it going to cost Britain to leave the EU? Photograph: Getty Images

The UK has accepted there may be a cost to exit the EU, but how much will the bill be?

Britain’s prime minister, Theresa May, and head of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker at 10 Downing Street. Photograph: Hannah McKay/Reuters

Leaks show absence of understanding and spirit of compromise in EU-UK relations

Taoiseach  Enda Kenny: the Government will seek EU support for Irish businesses and industries which face particular challenges from Brexit. Photograph: Olivier Matthys/AP

Theresa May warns Juncker she intends being ‘bloody difficult’ in negotiations

Taoiseach Enda Kenny: summit results do represent a significant achievement by the Government. Photograph: AFP

Nobody wants to see British leave, even though they were EU’s awkward squad since forever

Taoiseach Enda Kenny at a press  conference after the special EU Brexit summit in Brussels, Belgium. Photograph: Julien Warnand/EPA

Taoiseach says the declaration on Northern Ireland’s status is ‘hugely important’

Taoiseach  Enda Kenny listens to questions during a media conference at an EU summit in Brussels on Saturday. Photograph: AP

Taoiseach is in Canada next week and will not attend FG parliamentary party meeting

 Enda Kenny told reporters in Brussels that the purpose of the  statement was to ensure  Brexit ‘does not undermine any provision of the Good Friday Agreement’ rather than to move towards Irish unity. Photograph: EPA

Way clear for North to automatically become part of EU if its people vote for united Ireland

Taoiseach Enda Kenny. “The arguments for keeping him are not even a minority sport in Fine Gael.” Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Pat Leahy: Changes in personnel and policies will make politics more combustible

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