Tensions are rising in the Green Party as councillors and more than 60 members have urged Catherine Martin to run for leadership. The current leader, Eamonn Ryan, was part of a previous government with Fianna Fail and supported the bail out of banks and cut-backs on public transport. The party also seems split on whether entering a coalition government with Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael is the right move. People Before Profit Cllr Adrienne Wallace has called on Green TD for Carlow/Kilkenny, Malcolm Noonan, to urge his party to avoid “another disastrous government formation”.
She said, “Following a historic shift in Irish politics and a massive swing to left wing politics across the country it will be a sad day if the Greens sell out their mandate of change. The anti-water charges campaign, repeal and the marriage referendum have shown us that progressive change can come from outside the Dáil. If the Greens want to deliver on their environmental mandate, they should put their energy into building strong grassroots movements alongside left wing parties and not join a party of elites that are wed to the fossil fuel industry.”
Cllr Wallace added “both parties also support the beef and dairy barons. They think that an expansion of global exports will help bolster Irish capitalism. But unless, there is a radical re-orientation of Irish agriculture – which will include major support of small farmers – Ireland will continue to be an environmental laggard.”
She concluded by calling for a united approach to protect families in the eventuality of a recession, “The possibility of a looming recession means that we must fight to protect workers’, not repeat the mistakes of the past by heaping austerity onto ordinary people. Leo Varadkar has already started attacking families on the Covid 19 payment by saying there is no such thing as ‘free money’, it’s a pity he didn’t think that when he bailed out the banks to the tune of €64Billion. If the Greens join this coalition they will once again be supporting austerity. I am calling on Green Party members and TDs to ensure their party stays out of coalition – and then choose whatever leader they want.”