The deputy leader of the Green Party has said she is giving “serious consideration” to running for the leadership.
It comes as rural members of the party wrote to Catherine Martin “urging” her to challenge leader Eamon Ryan.
The letter stated: “Regardless of the outcome of these talks, we will need a leader who we trust to do the right thing for the country and the party.
“Whether we enter government or not, we believe the party needs a new leader, someone who will fight hard for all of our futures.
“We urge you to put yourself forward as a candidate for the leadership of the Green Party. You have our support.”
In a statement on Wednesday evening, Ms Martin said she was giving the request “serious consideration” but her “focus remains on the crucial government formation talks”.
She said: “I believe it is important that government formation talks fully conclude uninterrupted and that any leadership campaign happens subsequently.”
Under Green Party rules, a leadership election must happen within six months of a General Election.
The party held government formation talks with Fine Gael and Fianna Fail again on Wednesday, 102 days on from February’s inconclusive General Election.
The Green Party won 12 seats but there have been divisions within the party over the decision by Mr Ryan to lead them into the talks with Fianna Fail and Fine Gael.
Meanwhile, some Green Party members have already begun to back Mr Ryan or Ms Martin for leader.
Dublin city councillor Michael Pigeon tweeted: “For me the past few years have shown Eamon’s commitment not just to the party as an organisation, but the ideas that underpin it. Consistently one of the most thoughtful people in Irish politics. If there’s a leadership contest, he’ll have my vote.”
Yep. For me the past few years have shown Eamon's commitment not just to the party as an organisation, but the ideas that underpin it. Consistently one of the most thoughtful people in Irish politics.— Michael Pidgeon (@Pidge) May 20, 2020
If there's a leadership contest, he'll have my vote.https://t.co/ZON2KRt0EM
The Rural Young Greens wrote to Ms Martin to pledge their support for her should she run in the upcoming Green Party leadership election.
The Rural Young Greens have written to Catherine Martin today to pledge their support for her should she run in the upcoming Green Party/Comhaontas Glas leadership election.— Rural Young Greens - Ãige Ghlas na Tuaithe (@ruralyounggreen) May 20, 2020
See our full letter below pic.twitter.com/20xgK2D3fS