The UK will go to the polls in a general election on December 12th. Photograph: Christopher Furlong/Getty Images.

Inside Politics: Poll predicts majority for Boris - but a much smaller one than thought

Senior RTÉ sources say they are not against a move away from the Donnybrook campus, above, but that the economic case did not stack up at present File photograph: Cyril Byrne

Sources say NTMA advisory unit wants the sale option to remain on the table

RTÉ director general Dee Forbes: salaries are a lightning rod for political annoyance at its habit of running deficits.  Photograph: Tom Honan

Big salaries still bone of contention as breathing space bought by €10m handout

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar. ‘If there is to be a political salvation for Varadkar, he will need a new departure, a new project, a new narrative for the Government.’ Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Battlelines for a forthcoming election are being drawn, and not before time

 Taoiseach Leo Varadkar: “I think we have to be a normal workplace in Leinster House and the kind of regimes that exist around attendance and expenses are not what would be allowed in most workplaces.” Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Dara Murphy agrees to co-operate with investigation around attendance and expenses

SSE Airtricity League club award winners with FAI Director of Competitions Fran Gavin and  SSE Airtricity sponsorship manager Leanne Shiel at Knightsbrook Hotel in Trim, Co Meath. Photograph: Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile

Senior source expects financial results presented by organisation to be ‘horrific’

The Dáil Members’ Interests committee can conduct an investigation into  former Fine Gael TD Dara Murphy’s attendance – but he must request the inquiry. File photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

Ex-TD yet to comment on reports he received €10,000 a month from EPP, plus Dáil salary and expenses

 Fianna Fáil has lodged an official complaint about Dara Murphy with the Dáil Members Interests Committee. File photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

Ex-Fine Gael TD will receive more than €50,000 gross in severance under Oireachtas scheme

Dara Murphy,  Fine Gael TD for Cork North Central: to resign and take up job in Brussesl. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Fianna Fáil accuses Taoiseach of error of judgement in backing former junior minister

Minister for Housing Eoghan Murphy: The hours before the debate were characterised by frantic arm-twisting and wheeler-dealing. Photograph: Crispin Rodwell for The Irish Times

Government survives motion, but probably won’t be able to dictate timing of election

Robert Watt, secretary general of the Department of Public Expenditure: ‘We have systems to reward people . . . but people who don’t perform, it’s very difficult.’ Photograph: Jenny Barker

Robert Watt wants to be able to ‘manage out’ underperforming staff and ‘move things on’

Minister for Housing Eoghan Murphy faces a vote of no confidence on Tuesday. File photograph: Tom Honan

Party expects to win but needs support of departing TD Dara Murphy and at least three unaligned deputies

 Taoiseach Leo Varadkar: The Government is  facing a motion of no confidence in Minister for Housing Eoghan Murphy in the Dáil on Tuesday.  Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Pressure within Fine Gael for Varadkar to remove Verona Murphy from Wexford general election ticket

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar and Minister for Justice Charlie Flanagan at the Garda College, Templemore. Fine Gael’s leadership will be left with much to consider after the byelections. Photograph: Colin Keegan/Collins Dublin

Fianna Fáil looks in good shape even in voters’ apathy is most notable takeaway

More than one in every two regular voters stayed at home. Photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times

Analysis: Lack of interest among voters apparent as Fianna Fáil, Greens enjoy day in the sun

Newly elected Fianna Fál TD  Padraig O’Sullivan and party leader Micheal Martin  at the Cork North Central byelection count centre.Photograph: Provison

Fianna Fáil on course to win seats in Cork and Wexford, Greens likely to win in Fingal

 Taoiseach Leo Varadkar speaks at a  #WorkEqual conference in Dublin. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times

Ex-taoiseach never forgot public service shortcomings when trumpeting achievements

Dara Murphy has drawn his full TD’s salary of €94,500 plus parliamentary standard allowances totalling €51,600 per annum since taking up his job with the EPP in Brussels in September 2017. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

Party wants to know if absent TD breached regulations by claiming allowances

Detail of a ballot paper for the  Wexford constituency in today’s byelection. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Lack of voter engagement and low turnout means outcomes are highly unpredictable

On average the Oireachtas printers do 2,357 jobs every year. Photograph iStock.

Analysis: Another case of a State body identifying errors, but not identifying blame

Staff are understood to be seeking additional payment to be trained and use the new printer. Photograph: RTÉ News

‘This has been a total pig’s ear’: Members of PAC label situation as ‘absolute mess’

Fianna Fáil is anticipating a good day in the byelections, with perhaps two wins in Wexford and Cork. Stock photograph: Dara Mac Donaill

Inside Politics: Fine Gael seems to have zeroed in on Dublin Mid-West as its best hope

 Minister for Housing  Eoghan Murphy will need Independent support to survive the no-confidence motion. Photograph:  Gareth Chaney/Collins

Government will need to secure support from Independent TDs to ensure it wins vote

Entrepreneur Pádraig Ó Céidigh was appointed to the Senate by Enda Kenny in 2016 at the suggestion of the Fianna Fáil leader Michéal Martin.

Government has declined to release price, saying contracts have not been signed

 Gardaí behind a barricade at Stephens Green, Dublin during a protest by farmers over farm produce prices on Wednesday. Photograph: Collins

A number of roads in Dublin are blocked for a second day as part of a protest over prices

PAC chair  Seán Fleming  said the cost of the printer had been borne by two bodies, the Oireachtas and the OPW.  Photograph: Gareth Chaney Collins

PAC to examine spending on device and €230,000 works to fit it into building

Pádraig Ó Céidigh,  owner of Connemara Airport and Aer Arann. Photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

Deal with owner, entrepreneur and senator Pádraig Ó Céidigh, agreed in principle

Taoiseach Leo  Varadkar pointed out that there were already several proposals for citizens’ assemblies. Photograph: Collins

Taoiseach and Tánaiste Simon Coveney later met Sinn Féin deputy leader Michelle O’Neill

By the time the mistake was discovered and rectified, a loss had materialised for the National Treasury Management Agency.

Public Accounts Committee to flag incident at NTMA in report and urge stricter controls

 Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe: told Noel Grealish, he was ‘disappointed with the apparent ethnic basis of your statements’. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Minister explains State agencies’ role in monitoring cash transfers in letter to Independent TD

Fine Gael election candidate Verona Murphy (C) canvassing in New Ross, Co Wexford. Photograph: Patrick Browne

If he loses all four, Varadkar will start the new year under serious pressure

Minister for Communications Richard Bruton, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar and businessman David McCourt sign the National Broadband Plan at St Kevin’s National School in Glendalough, Co Wicklow.

Social media posts raise questions of a blurring between Government activity and campaigning

Gordon Sondland, ambassador to the European Union, during his testimony at a House impeachment inquiry hearing in Washington. Photograph: Doug Mills/The New York Times

Inside Politics: Ambassador to EU tells inquiry there was a quid pro quo in relation to US president’s dealings with Ukraine

The State has made a settlement and paid the legal costs of Aoife Bennett, who claimed she developed narcolepsy after receiving the swine flu vaccine. Photograph: Laura Hutton

Government sources say ministers favour no-fault compensation scheme

Leo Varadkar: ‘The case I always make is that we are in favour of migration.’

Taoiseach attempts to close off byelection row sparked by Verona Murphy comments

Minister for Education and Donegal TD Joe McHugh boasted that Fine Gael is spending €128 million in that county to connect 32,000 homes. File photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Ministers have resolved to throw their weight behind the plan despite some private reservations

Verona Murphy: ‘We also have to take into account that possibility that Isis have already manipulated children as young as three or four’. Photograph: Dylan Vaughan

Fine Gael byelection candidate said addiction and bad choices lead people to become homeless

Minister of Communications Richard Bruton, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar and David McCourt of National Broadband Ireland at a school in Glendalough, Co Wicklow. Photograph: Richard Bruton/Twitter

Over 90% of premises will have access to broadband within four years - Bruton

The contract will be signed with National Broadband Ireland, the group led by US businessman David McCourt, above. Photograph: Jason Clarke

Plan could cost as much as €3bn in coming years and will leave network in private hands

Senior civil servants in the Department of Public Expenditure strongly opposed the plan on a value-for-money basis. File image: Michael Smith/Getty

Cabinet to hold early morning meeting, with work on first connections expected to start within weeks

There is  significant frustration among many politicians about RTÉ and the way it operates. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Public service broadcasting is necessary for politics and a healthy public life

Fine Gael politician Maria Bailey has been deselected by the party. File photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Party meeting voted to remove TD from general election ticket in Dún Laoghaire

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar and Northern Secretary Julian Smith at the British-Irish Council meeting at Farmleigh in Dublin. Photograph: PA

Northern Secretary says such an election would make ‘a failure of every politician’ in North

Margrethe Vestager, European Commissioner for Competition. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Move paves the way for contracts with US firm Granahan McCourt to be signed

Sinn Féin is bullish about John Finucane’s chance of taking DUP deputy leader Nigel Dodds’s seat in North Belfast, where the SDLP has stood aside. Photograph: Getty

Party eyes UK poll as opening to unseat Nigel Dodds, but fortunes in Republic on the slide

Noel Grealish has held the seat in Galway West   since 2002, first for the PDs and afterwards as an independent. Photograph: Alan Betson

Comments in the Dáil about ‘astronomical’ sums sent to Nigeria were prepared and scripted

People Before Profit TD Richard Boyd Barrett: Money message system is “just a political ruse”. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Government has used the provision to block more than 50 opposition Bills

Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe   presented his budget for 2020 last month assuming Britain would leave the EU without a deal. File photograph: Stephen Collins/Collins Photos

Brexit extension will result in better end of year position for exchequer, says Minister

Sinn Féin leader Mary Lou McDonald (R) and deputy leader Michelle O’Neill at the party’s election launch in Belfast. Photograph: Charles McQuillan/Getty Images

Inside Politics: Party is standing aside in some constituencies and asking voters to support anti-Brexit candidates

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment, Richard Bruton said the Government was ‘determined to create an alternative future for people’. File image: Laura Hutton/The Irish Times

Locals sceptical that funds and jobs promised by Government will materialise

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar and Britain’s prime minister Boris Johnson at the Thornton Manor Hotel, near Birkenhead for talks  in October. Photograph:  Noel Mullen/AFP via Getty Images

Irish observers may bemoan lack of attention on North but Dublin has other priorities too

Séamus Dooley, Irish Secretary of the National Union of Journalists with chairwoman of the trade union group at RTÉ, Shirley Bradshaw, Fran McNulty, RTÉ Agriculture Correspondent and Karan O’Loughlin, arts, culture, print & media sector of Siptu on their way onto a meeting at RTÉ in Donnybrook this week. Photograph: Leah Farrell/RollingNews.ie

A sad week for everyone in RTÉ suddenly became a difficult and fraught one

Rainy day: RTÉ workers at the company’s headquarters at Donnybrook in Dublin. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Get back in the queue, says one Minister of RTÉ’s requests for funding

The RTÉ campus, Donnybrook, Dublin 4, as the broadcaster announced it will cut some 200 jobs next year. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Broadcaster hopes to generate €50m from second land sale at Donnybrook campus

 Solidarity-People Before Profit  TD Bríd Smith: submitted a motion. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Four Solidarity-People Before Profit TDs challenging decision of Ceann Comhairle

Ceann Comhairle Seán Ó Fearghaíl. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Case arises after Ceann Comhairle blocks bid by TDs to alter regulations on order paper

TDs Paul Murphy and Bríd Smith at the Four Courts for their High Court action challenging the Ceann Comhairle’s decision not to allow a vote on changing Dáil standing orders. Photograph: Collins Courts

Opposition TDs will get day in court to make case for vote aiming to stop blocking of Bills

Solidarity-People Before Profit TDs Paul Murphy and Bríd Smith at the Four Courts. Photograph: Collins Courts

Injunction ordering change to Dáil order of business refused

The Ceann Comhairle suspended the Dáil after a row broke out over a private members Bill. Photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times

Ceann Comhairle suspended Dáil after row over private members Bill

Ceann Comhairle Seán Ó’Fearghaíl said he was not ‘prepared to be bullied’, before suspending the Dáil. Photograph: Maxwell

Government abusing device in ‘sabotage to democratic process’, says Boyd Barrett

Richard Boyd Barrett  said the use of the device by the Government was ‘an outrageous sabotage of democracy.’ Photograph: Collins

TDs seeking to stop Government blocking opposition Bills approved by Dáil

Michael Healy-Rae: ‘I did nothing wrong.’ Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Kerry TD maintains he was at Dáil on day in question before travelling for Sneem funeral

Leo Varadkar’s definitive quashing of general election speculation this week probably means that an election – triggered by him anyway – is off the agenda until next spring at the earliest

You would think Fine Gael had learned that Governments which preside over economic growth lose

Firms such as Mazars, Deloitte, KPMG and Ernest and Young appear repeatedly in the figures for Government spending on outside consultants. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Consultancy for Government a lucrative business for small number of firms

 Protestors outside the proposed accommodation for 130 asylum seekers in Ballinamore, Co Leitrim. Photograph: Brian Farrell

Martin Kenny spoke in support of centre for asylum seekers in Ballinamore, Co Leitrim

Fianna Fáil TD Lisa Chambers.  Noel Rock of Fine Fáil is expected to withdraw his complaint about her to the Dáil Members’ Interests Committee. Photograph: Fran Veale©

Complaints about Niall Collins, Timmy Dooley and Barry Cowen to be considered

Britain’s prime minister Boris Johnson. Photograph: Simon Dawson

Brussels awaits Westminster decision on election before announcing on extension

British prime minister Boris Johnson and Taoiseach Leo Varadkar: After their first meeting, Mr Varadkar told his officials: I believe he wants a deal. The second meeting broke the deadlock. Photograph: Olivier Hoslet

Accepting Johnson’s ascension to power had changed Brexit dynamics was smart politics

A trade deal between the European Union and the United Kingdom is unlikely to be completed before the deadline at the end of next year, Irish European Commissioner Phil Hogan has said. File photograph: Nick Bradshaw/The Irish Times.

Former minister accepts fears over Mercosur deal, says Europeans need to be convinced to ‘eat more red meat’

French president Emmanuel Macron is unwilling to wave through a three-month Brexit extension for the UK, sources in Brussels and Dublin said. Photograph: Simon Dawson/Bloomberg

French government says UK should examine deal ‘as quickly as possible’

In the Dáil, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar warned TDs that the current phase of Brexit was only the beginning of a process. Photograph: Sean Gallup/Getty Images

Taoiseach agrees to Tusk request to approve Brexit extension for UK until January 31st

Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe (right) has launched The Globalist, a biography of Peter Sutherland by John Walsh (left).  Photograph Nick Bradshaw

Minister says biography of late AG and WTO head is the story of ‘a life and an idea’

Minister for Health Simon Harris has been seeking to turn up the heat on Fianna Fáil since the voting issue emerged . File photograph: Dara Mac Donaill/The Irish Times.

Analysis: Frosty relations between Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael deteriorating further

Speaker John Bercow addressing the House of Commons in London on October 21st on the European Union (EU) Withdrawal Act 2018 motion. Photograph: JESSICA TAYLOR/UK PARLIAMENT/AFP via Getty Images

Vote on legislation likely to be close, with reports from London suggesting a narrow victory for prime minister

  A London march by the People’s Vote organisation   calling for a final Brexit say in a second referendum.  Photograph:  Niklas Halle’n/AFP via Getty Images

European Parliament will not vote on new Withdrawal Agreement until British parliament has decided whether to ratify the deal

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar arrives for the second day of a two-day summit of European Union leaders in Brussels on Friday. Photograph: Sean Gallup/Getty Images

Dodds rejects Taoiseach’s move to reassure unionists on North’s status

If he does a deal after the election with Labour, Green Party leader Eamon  Ryan will hold the key to the next government. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

With support in polls in the ascendent, Greens are on the cusp of a breakthrough

British prime minister Boris Johnson: With  hardline Brexiteers still undecided and  expelled Conservatives divided over how to vote, the outcome is expected to depend on a handful of votes. Photograph: Sean Gallup/Getty Images

Former PMs Tony Blair and John Major warn Irish Sea border could fuel unionist fears

Luxembourg’s prime minister Xavier Bettel and UK prime minister Boris Johnson during the EU summit in Brussels. Photograph: John Thys/AFP via Getty

Boris Johnson boshed his way into the summit chamber, bowing theatrically

 Taoiseach Leo Varadkar    said many of the Government’s preparations for a no-deal Brexit would be stood down if the House of Commons votes to approve the new agreement. File photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Varadkar seeks to reassure DUP ahead of indicative vote in Commons on Brexit deal

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar speaks while Donald Tusk, president of the EU listens during a news conference in Brussels, Thursday. Photograph: Simon Dawson/Bloomberg

Clamour in Fine Gael for early election will become deafening if deal passes

British prime minister Boris Johnson, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar, Danish prime minister Mette Frederiksen and German chancellor Angela Merkel at the  European Council summit in Brussels on Thursday. Photograph: Olivier Hoslet/EPA

British PM scrambling for MPs’ support ahead of Westminster vote on Saturday

President of the European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker and British prime minister Boris Johnson shake hands in Brussels on Thursday. Photograph: Olivier Hoslet/EPA

New deal contains a number of provisions in relation to North in four key areas

British prime minister Boris Johnson: ‘I am very confident that when my colleagues in Parliament study this agreement that they will want to vote for it on Saturday and in succeeding days.’ Photograph:  Stephanie Lecocq/EPA

PM urges parliament to ‘come together and get this thing done’ despite DUP rejection

In all regions of the country outside Dublin, majorities oppose increases in the price of oil, gas and other fossil fuels to tackle climate change, the poll found. Photographer: Dara Mac Dónaill

One in three ‘not that worried’ about climate change, Irish Times/Ipsos MRBI poll finds

Demonstrators at a major climate protest  in  Dublin in May. File photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Respondents split over willingness to pay more for fossil fuels to tackle problem

British prime minister Boris Johnson in London on Tuesday. Photograph: Andy Rain/EPA/Bloomberg

Senior sources say the prospects of an accord are ‘looking more promising’

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar is riding high in the personal ratings. File photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Fine Gael unable to pull away from the rest despite Taoiseach’s surge in personal rating

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar and the Government’s approval ratings have risen significantly since the last Irish Times poll.

Public shows support for Taoiseach and Government’s stance on Brexit and economy

A November election would require Taoiseach Leo Varadkar to gamble his office, when he could look forward to sitting in it for another six months. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Deal would leave Varadkar facing his biggest political decision as Taoiseach

European Union chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier says that he had a ‘constructive meeting’ with British Brexit envoy Stephen Barclay on Friday. Photograph: Francisco Seco/AP

Most had predicted that talks on a deal would break down, but that’s all changed utterly

EU Brexit chief negotiator Michel Barnier at the EU headquarters in Brussels on Friday. Photograph: Kenzo Tribouillard/AFP via Getty Images

Barnier and UK counterpart agree to intensification the discussions

Brexit talks: British prime minister Boris Johnson in conversation with Taoiseach Leo Varadkar. Photograph: PA

No EU-UK agreement on new withdrawal pact without Republic’s assent, says Dublin

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar and British prime minister Boris Johnson shake hands  outside Thornton Manor Hotel near Birkenhead on Thursday. Photograph: Noel Mullen/Government Press Office via Getty Images

Taoiseach holds ‘very positive and very promising’ meeting with Boris Johnson

European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker and EU chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier: there is little expectation in Brussels that a breakthrough is possible to enable EU leaders to approve a deal. Photograph: Stephanie Lecocq

Taoiseach’s talks with Johnson in Liverpool defined as focusing on Brexit deal ‘process’

It will be the second meeting between the Taoiseach Leo Varadkar and  British prime Minister Boris Johnson  in the space of three weeks. File photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

The private meeting is expected to take place in the Liverpool area

 Paschal Donohoe in studio at RTE ahead of the Today with Sean O’Rourke show to take calls from the public on Budget 2019. Photograph: Brian Lawless/PA Wire

Government delivers cautious budget amid no-deal Brexit fears

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar: ‘I don’t play dirty, and I don’t think most EU leaders do either.’ Photograph: Brian Lawless/PA Wire

Language ‘from some quarters’ toxic, says Taoiseach, as Downing Street spins

Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe: faced challenges to present a prudent, green and Brexit-proofed budget. Photograph: Paul Faith/AFP/Getty Images

The Minister is claiming the mantle of fiscal prudence, but is it looking a little threadbare?

The Budget 2020 speech by Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe on display across multiple televisions at Harvey Norman Airside Retail Park. Photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times

Expected tax cuts and welfare increases fail to materialise in standstill budget

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