Joan Burton ‘deplores’ leak of internal Labour party analysis
Alan Kelly’s spokesman denies accusations the Minister put information in public
Tanaiste Joan Burton met with pensioners and other people who are to benefit from the restoration of the Christmas bonus. Pictured from left are Joe Costello TD, Rosie McKenny Cabra, Joan Burton, Brian Brennan Dublin 8 and Jim Butler Dundrum.Photograph: Cyril Byrne / The Irish Times
Tánaiste Joan Burton has deplored the leak of internal Labour party analysis which claimed the party could lose up to 20 seats.
The Irish Times published the contents of the analysis last week and TDs have accused their deputy leader Alan Kelly of putting the information into the public domain.
However, speaking today Ms Burton fully backed Mr Kelly and criticised the person who leaked the analysis.
She said: “I have been talking to Alan and he, like everybody else, absolutely deplores whoever was responsible for doing that.
“It is difficult to know the motivation of whoever was doing that. I don’t know if it is a single source or whether it is a number of sources.
“It is difficult to make out what their motivation was because they certainly weren’t helping themselves and they were not focusing on getting Labour re-elected.”
The Labour Party figures warned the party could return with between 10 and 16 TDs at the next general election, compared to the 37 seats it won in 2011.
A report today suggested that the Minister for the Environment Alan Kelly has been accused by TDs and Senators of leaking the information.
Mr Kelly and his spokesman have denied that allegation and labelled the analysis “ill-informed nonsense”.
Speaking today, Ms Burton insisted she has not seen the contents of the internal party analysis.
She said: “All of the time every TD in their own constituency is constantly assessing their own position, they are looking at how the opposition are doing.
“The parties as a whole are doing that continuously but that is entirely different to suggestions that there was some kind of survey which had those outcomes. That is not so.”
Ms Burton was speaking as she met with pensioners and other people who are to benefit from the restoration of the Christmas bonus.