Varadkar favourite to replace Kenny, as Fine Gael remains most popular party

Fianna Fáil's Micheál Martin is still the most popular leader

Varadkar favourite to replace Kenny, as Fine Gael remains most popular party

Taoiseach Enda Kenny with Minister Leo Varadkar in Dublin | Image: RollingNews.ie

Fine Gael has retained a narrow lead as the most popular party in the country, according to a new opinion poll.

However the Millward Brown poll for the Sunday Independent reveals that Fianna Fáil's Micheál Martin is still the most popular party leader on 43%.

Satisfaction ratings for Mr Kenny and Sinn Fein's president Gerry Adams are at 29%, while Labour Party leader Brendan Howlin is at 25%.

The poll, which was taken before and after the budget, has Fine Gael on 29%, with Fianna Fáil on 27% and Sinn Féin on 20%.

The Labour Party is up one to 8%, the Green Party are down one to 2% while Independents/Others are up one to 15%.

But despite spending on investment and tax cuts, Fine Gael is down one point on the last poll.

Fine Gael’s partners in Government, the Independent Alliance, are at 5%, the Anti-Austerity Alliance/People Before Profit are at 5% and the Social Democrats are at 1%.

Political correspondent with the Sunday Independent, Philip Ryan, says that Social Protection Leo Varadkar remains a popular choice for the next Fine Gael leader.