Opinion poll renews speculation on early general election

FG up 5 percentage points to 31%, Labour up 1 to 8% in Behaviour & Attitudes opinion poll

 Speculation that Enda Kenny would not bring the Dáil back after Christmas was dismissed by senior Fine Gael sources. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Speculation that Enda Kenny would not bring the Dáil back after Christmas was dismissed by senior Fine Gael sources. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

 

An opinion poll with positive results for Fine Gael has led to renewed speculation in political circles about an early general election.

Minister of State for Finance Simon Harris said the last time people tried to guess when Taoiseach Enda Kenny would call the election, many people had got it wrong.

“The Dáil will rise at the end of this coming week for Christmas and one presumes it may come back for a week or two,’’ Mr Harris said. “It is entirely a matter for the Taoiseach to decide.’’

Early spring date

Speaking in Dublin on Sunday, Mr Harris said Mr Kenny had made it very clear the election would be held “in early spring’’ to avoid confusion.

He said he understood that was still the likelihood.

Fine Gael rose five percentage points to 31 per cent and Labour was up one to eight per cent in the latest Behaviour & Attitudes opinion poll for the Sunday Times.

However, speculation that Mr Kenny would not bring the Dáil back after Christmas was dismissed by a number of senior Fine Gael sources.

Some said they believed Mr Kenny had not yet made up his mind about a date.