Marita Moloney
Marita Moloney

15.58 9 Feb 2020


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Sinn Féin leader Mary Lou McDonald has said that the country needs a new government that does not involve either Fine Gael or Fianna Fáil.

Arriving at the RDS count centre to big crowds, the TD for Dublin Central said that the two biggest parties are "are still in denial" as tallies show Sinn Féin could add 15 seats following the election.

She said: "It seems the political establishment are still in a state of denial, they're still not listening to the people.

"I want us to have a government for the people, ideally without Fine Gael or Fianna Fáil in it.

"I've said through the campaign that we need change, we need a new government.

"The best outcome is a government without Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil - that's the first thing I went to test, whether that is possible."

Ms McDonald, who will likely top the poll in her constituency, said that she had spoken to other parties today including the Greens and Solidarity - People Before Profit.

She said: "I also consistently said that that I would talk and listen to everyone...that's what democracy demands."

The party leader said she did not accept the rhetoric from Fine Gael or Fianna Fáil about refusing to work with Sinn Féin, as that would be "excluding a quarter of the electorate".

She said her party was a "vehicle for change" and that their apparent success this weekend "is a statement that people want a different type of government".

She added: "This is not a protest vote - this is certainly an election that is historic in proportion, this is an election that is changing the shape and the mould of Irish politics... this is just the beginning."

Main image: Sinn Fein President Mary Lou McDonald at the General Election count at the RDS in Dublin. 

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