Simon Coveney: serious, hardworking and ambitious

New Tánaiste lost out to Leo Varadkar in the Fine Gael leadership race earlier this year

Tánaiste Simon Coveney. File photograph: EPA

Tánaiste Simon Coveney. File photograph: EPA


New Tánaiste Simon Coveney is Minister for Foreign Affairs and also the deputy leader of Fine Gael.

Due to his Foreign Affairs portfolio, he holds a crucial role in the Government’s Brexit negotiations.

Mr Coveney previously served as Minister for Agriculture, Minister for Defence and Minister for Housing.

Serious, hardworking and ambitious, he is not a populist politician.

He ran in the Fine Gael leadership campaign against Taoiseach Leo Varadkar in 2017 but was defeated.

In 2010 he backed Richard Bruton in the 2010 heave against Fine Gael leader Enda Kenny.

He was first appointed as a TD for Cork-South Central in 1998 after the death of his father Hugh Coveney.

He obliged the party in 2004 when he successfully ran for the European Parliament but returned to the Dáil in the 2007 general election.

He successfully led the Fine Gael campaign for marriage equality in the 2015 referendum.