McDonald rules out challenging Adams for leadership

"I don't foresee it at all in the near future", she added

McDonald rules out challenging Adams for leadership

7/2/2016. General Election 2016 - Counting of Votes. Scenes from the RDS count centre, A Happy Deputy Leader of Sinn Fein Mary Lou Mac Donald TD for Dublin Central celebrates after her election at the RDS (Eammon Farrell/RollingNews.ie)

Sinn Féin Deputy Leader Mary Lou McDonald has ruled out any leadership challenge should the country head to a second general election within the year.

When asked if such a scenario came to pass, would Gerry Adams continue to lead the party, she said: "Of course Gerry will be leading it.... There will be no challenge".

"I don't foresee it at all in the near future", she added.

She did, however, admit she would like to lead Sinn Féin at some point in the future: "As an when the situation arises, yes, I have expressed an interest".

When questioned by Colette Fitzpatrick about Sinn Féin's vote management in Donegal, she said the party had been ambitious, and that there "is always a level of risk associated with that".

While Pearse Doherty is set to be returned comfortably, Pádraig MacLochlainn faces a tight finish, possibly a result of Sinn Féin running a third candidate and splitting their vote.

Though Sinn Féin have not received the vote shared predicted in recent polls, McDonald said the party has had "a very good election", in line with their own expectations.

"The only thing we can be categoric about", she said, is that the Fine Gael- Labour coalition "has been sacked and rightly so".

She said Sinn Féin still want to be in government, but will not prop up a Fine Gael or Fianna Fáil-led coalition.

"We in Sinn Féin consistently ruled out propping up either Fine Gael or Fianna Fáil, or being their mudguard to allow them run rampant for another term of Government".

However, McDonald expressed skepticism about another election this year, which has been widely suggested. All that could be said so far, she believes, is that the majority of the electorate have "expressed a very clear preference for something new".

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