Here's who's supporting whom in the race for the Fine Gael leadership
The race for the leadership has begun.
With Michael Noonan and James Reilly announcing their decisions to step down as Minister for Finance and Deputy Leader of Fine Gael respectively, focus now turns to Leo Vardakar and Simon Coveney in the race for the Fine Gael leadership.
Noonan has said he does not want to be considered for a Cabinet position by the next Taoiseach while Senator Reilly resigned as deputy leader of Fine Gael Thursday afternoon.
In order to be declared in the running for the leadership, candidates need a total of eight nominations in order to run for the post and both Varadkar and Coveney have secured the essential eight signatures.
— Leo Varadkar (@LeoVaradkar) May 17, 2017
Leo has 13 nominations so far, one of which is the signature of Richard Bruton, whom Varadkar stood behind in 2010 when a motion of no confidence was put towards Enda Kenny as the leader of the party.
The other 12 names siding for Leo are: Eoghan Murphy TD, Michael D'Arcy TD, Colm Brophy TD, Noel Rock TD, Pat Deering TD, John Paul Phelan TD, Ciaran Cannon TD, Alan Farrell TD, Brian Hayes MEP, Senator Frankie Feighan, Senator Martin Conway and Senator Neale Richmond.
Thank u Enda Kenny for 15 years of positive leadership of FG + 6 years as an inspirational Taoiseach through difficult days. We owe u a lot
— Simon Coveney (@simoncoveney) May 17, 2017
Simon has just one more name in his list of nominations and of the 14, one is current Minister for Health, Simon Harris TD.
Others who are siding with Coveney are: Damien English TD, Dara Murphy, Maira Bailey TD, Kate O'Connell TD, David Stanton TD, Marcella Corcoran Kennedy TD, Senator James Reilly, Senator Tim Lombard, Senator John O'Mahony, Senator Gabrielle McFadden, Senator Colm Burke, Senator Jerry Buttimer and Senator Paudie Coffey.
"He should give electorate a choice between a real alternative or more of the same. He should call a General Election." - @MaryLouMcDonald
— Sinn Féin (@sinnfeinireland) May 18, 2017
Sinn Féin deputy leader, Mary Lou McDonald, believes that whoever the next leader of Fine Gael is, they should call a general election to seek a mandate to hold the office of Taoiseach.