Photograph from Oireachtas TV
The Tánaiste Leo Varadkar has defended a bitter exchange of words with Pearse Doherty in the Dáil chamber last week and described it as 'self-defence.'
Tánaiste Leo Varadkar and Sinn Féin's finance spokesperson Pearse Doherty clashed in a heated debate in the Dáil this lunchtime, which was characterised by personal attacks | Read more: https://t.co/fgMi63OKO3 pic.twitter.com/KME7oGFQfB— RTÉ News (@rtenews) June 16, 2022
Mr Varadkar told Newstalk Breakfast, this morning, that it "probably didn't" reflect well on politics - but is sometimes necessary. The Tánaiste didn't go through the detail of what was said last week but said that in his mind it was very much self defence.
"Sinn Féin - whether it's their supporters online, or their supporters on the streets, or their politicians in the Dáil - are constantly trying to attack us personally and bully us and do us down on the Government benches," he said.
He spoke about the manner in which he claims Sinn Féin relates to their political opponents:"I think the way they try to demonise their political opponents - sort of make out that they care about people more than us.
"It started off, let's not forget, because Pearse Doherty alleged that my party was out of touch because I'd steak and chips with Jimmy Deenihan in the members restaurant the night before - no public money involved."
"Yet they can go on their exotic, fundraising trips around the world and drink champagne, and they're totally down with normal people.
"When you have to listen to that kind of stuff day-in, day-out - I think even for your own mental health, every now and then, you have to snap back."
Subscribe or register today to discover more from DonegalLive.ie
Buy the e-paper of the Donegal Democrat, Donegal People's Press, Donegal Post and Inish Times here for instant access to Donegal's premier news titles.
Keep up with the latest news from Donegal with our daily newsletter featuring the most important stories of the day delivered to your inbox every evening at 5pm.