'Desperate' – Irish Tory politician on Enda's Brexit appeal

After Taoiseach argues UK referendum is the biggest decision for Ireland since the Good Friday Agreement

Taoiseach, Dail, vote, government, talks, coalition, Enda Kenny, Frances Fitzgerald

Taoiseach Enda Kenny at his final press conference before the general election | Image: Rollingnews.ie

With Taoiseach Enda Kenny travelling around the UK this week on the 'Remain' campaign trail as the Brexit vote looms large, he has come under fire from elected officials in the UK.

One Irish-born Conservative has slammed what she perceives to be interference from the Irish Government in the British matter.

Speaking to the Irish Independent, Michelle Donohue-Moncrieff – a Carlow woman who left Ireland at the age of 22 and is now a Tory councillor in Scarborough, Yorkshire –  argued that her country of birth doesn't do enough to challenge the European Union's power.

She said:

"I’m deeply uncomfortable with the Taoiseach running around in a rather desperate way. To most English people who see it, it doesn’t look very good.

"It looks like we don’t have any confidence in ourselves. It looks like we’re so desperate to get these Irish people to vote to stay.

"My concern about the whole political dialogue in Ireland is that for the best part of 30 years there has been no critical thinking on the European Union, or the EEC as it was then.

"We’ve never had a proper critical debate. The whole body politic, the civil service, works on the basis that the EU is good no matter what it does."

Donohue-Moncrieff, who is pro-Brexit, said that her area is "overwhelmingly" backing the 'Leave' campaign and immigration is the key issue for them in the debate.

She also dismissed the notion that Brexit would usher in a "hard border" between the Republic and Northern Ireland:

"Ireland is not legally obliged to join Schengen, so under a Brexit Ireland’s position would have a special status.

"There would have to be an arrangement that would deal with the border."

The Taoiseach had warned that he would be powerless to prevent border check points should a Brexit come to pass while speaking in Belfast yesterday.

He argued that the referendum is the biggest decision for Ireland since the Good Friday Agreement, and that the UK leaving the EU would be a "regrettable and backward step for North-South trade and co-operation."

Kenny is set to join British Prime Minister David Cameron in Manchester to campaign for a 'Remain' vote. He will also visit Liverpool and Glasgow.