Ceann Comhairle Seán Ó Fearghail turns  on the Oireachtas Christmas tree lights at Leinster House. He was joined  by Cathaoirleach of the Seanad Denis O’Donovan, party leaders and other members of the Oireachtas with music and song provided by the Oireachtas choir and the Cavan Rugby Club male voice choir. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

It’s been a torrid few weeks for the Taoiseach. Doubtless, he will enjoy Christmas in the bosom of the Varadkars and take a short break from the ince(...)

Former tánaiste Frances Fitzgerald: When in doubt, just forget. Photograph: Tom Honan

At the very outset – and let me be absolutely clear about this – I had no hand, act or part in the erection of last week’s column. I did not commissi(...)

The Taoiseach's forthcoming trip to Brussels for a crucial European Council meeting might just be the thing to buff up his tarnished halo. Photograph: Clodagh Kilcoyne/Reuters

Once more unto the breach... “Taoiseach, faced with implacable opposition, you will need to stand firm and not blink.” No, this wasn’t Frances Fitzg(...)

Minister for Justice Charlie Flanagan and his predecessor Frances Fitzgerald. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons/The Irish Times.

Good luck to the dry cleaners. They’ll have their work cut out trying to launder the imprint of Leo Varadkar’s boot from the seat of Charlie Flanagan(...)

Micheál may yet take Frances to appease the gods of Fianna Fáil. Photograph: The Irish Times

Fear stalks the land. The Zombie Apocalypse has reached Leinster House. Only Leo can save us now. “If they get Frances Fitzgerald, they’ll come looki(...)

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar: absolutely seething with his Ministers for showing him up in the Dáil and putting his Government under threat. Photograph: Clodagh Kilcoyne/Reuters

In the Members’ Bar, TDs and Senators gathered to watch the Six One News. Not so much to hear what happened during a tense and uncertain day in Leinst(...)

Tánaiste and former minister for justice Frances Fitzgerald: Both Micheál Martin and Mary Lou McDonald excoriated the Taoiseach and his beleaguered Minister for changing timelines and details as information evolved. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

So the guards were assembling a rocket which they were going to place under a troublesome subordinate disrupting their cosy existence. The former min(...)

Frances Fitzgerald: The jury was out last night as to whether she did enough to keep her job. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

With the best will in the world, the Taoiseach explained to the Dáil, he is only as good as the information he is given. Leo could have cast a scorn(...)

Voting at the Sinn Fein ardfheis. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

It was never going to be business as usual at this year’s Sinn Féin ardfheis. Martin McGuinness gone. Gerry Adams finally letting go. Will it ever be (...)

Simon Coveney has finally ended his search for a second special adviser. Eyebrows will be raised in the political and media bubble around Kildare Str(...)