Alan Kelly to put his name forward for Labour leadership

Party colleagues Brendan Howlin and Seán Sherlock are also expected to run

Jobs, Tipperary, Nenagh, First Data, Alan Kelly, IDA, election, gamechanger

Environment Minister Alan Kelly in the press centre in Government Buildings | Image:

Former environment minister Alan Kelly has confirmed he intends to run for the Labour leadership. 

In an interview on RTÉ's Late Late Show, the Labour TD said he plans to put his name forward when nominations for the role open next week.

Former public expenditure minister Brendan Howlin and Cork East TD Seán Sherlock are also expected to contest the position. 

Asked if he sees himself coming out of the process as leader, Mr Kelly responded: "I hope that to be the case."

He added: "I think we need someone who is going to plan for multiple elections and is going to bring about a certain change in the party - a different philosophy, maybe."

Mr Kelly also said the Labour parliamentary party will have to consider whether or not to elect a new deputy leader, in light of its reduced size. 

The Tipperary deputy defended his party's role in government earlier in the interview, saying the economic crisis left it with "no choice" but to enter into coalition with Fine Gael.

However, he acknowledged that Labour's messaging had not always resonated with voters.

"By and large, we lost because of the flow of populism that has engulfed Irish politics," he said.

"Also, maybe, the way we related and spoke to people didn't connect. We achieved a lot but moving onto the next level was going to be difficult given the environment the government had come through." 

Joan Burton resigned as Labour leader earlier this week after the party shed 30 seats in February’s general election.