Mary Lou McDonald ‘won’t run away’ with herself on SF poll bounce

Irish Times/Ipsos MRBI poll: 3-point gain for Sinn Féin, with 42% support among under-25s

Sinn Féin leader Mary Lou McDonald: “I saw it on the front of The Irish Times, of course if there are polls you want to see you have gone up rather than gone down.”  File photograph: Stephen Collins/Collins Photos

Sinn Féin leader Mary Lou McDonald: “I saw it on the front of The Irish Times, of course if there are polls you want to see you have gone up rather than gone down.” File photograph: Stephen Collins/Collins Photos

 

Sinn Féin leader Mary Lou McDonald has insisted she will not get carried away with the party’s bounce in the latest Irish Times/Ipsos MRBI poll.

There was a three-point gain for Sinn Féin under its new leader and most significantly it now holds 42 per cent support with respondents aged under 25.

Speaking as she launched her party’s campaign for the repeal of the Eighth Amendment, Ms McDonald said polls set the political temperature.

However, she added: “I wouldn’t run away with myself. One swallow does not a summer make.

“I saw it on the front of The Irish Times, of course if there are polls you want to see you have gone up rather than gone down,” she said.

“But on the issues of how we develop politically, it is a medium- and long-term plan and then decisions will be on government and government formation, not on any poll, other than the poll of polls on election day.”

State of the parties

The state of the parties, when undecided voters are excluded, is: Fine Gael – 31 per cent (down three points compared to the last poll in January); Fianna Fáil – 26 per cent (up one); Sinn Féin – 22 per cent (up three); Labour – 5 per cent (up one); Independents/Others – 16 per cent (down two).

Ms McDonald also recorded an approval rating of 39 per cent as party leader, up 12 points on the backing of her predecessor Gerry Adams.

Asked whether Sinn Féin would consider a coalition with Fianna Fáil after a general election, Ms McDonald said the party is ready, willing and able to go into government.

This decision would be based on a progressive programme for government being put in place, she added.