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Eilis O'Hanlon

Mary Lou McDonald v Micheal Martin… this time it's personal

Eilis O'Hanlon


The Sinn Fein president promised Dublin's coalition government 'one hell of an opposition', but the ball is still the Taoiseach's to drop, says Eilis O'Hanlon

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Taoiseach Michael Martin

Taoiseach Michael Martin

PA

Sinn Fein leader Mary Lou McDonald

Sinn Fein leader Mary Lou McDonald

New dawn: Mary Lou McDonald’s Twitter picture with Prince Charles and Michelle O’Neill

New dawn: Mary Lou McDonald’s Twitter picture with Prince Charles and Michelle O’Neill

Secretary of State for Northern Ireland Brandon Lewis meets with Taoiseach, Micheal Martin (left) in Stormont House, Belfast

Secretary of State for Northern Ireland Brandon Lewis meets with Taoiseach, Micheal Martin (left) in Stormont House, Belfast

PA

Taoiseach Michael Martin

Micheal Martin, who made his first visit as Taoiseach to Northern Ireland on Thursday, remains something of an unknown quantity to most people here, despite being around the Irish political scene far longer than his predecessor.

Leo Varadkar only became a TD in 2007. By that point, Martin had been in the Dail for 18 years and had already served as a Cabinet minister in three different departments.

It's a measure of how little people on both sides of the border still know about each other that he remains such a mystery, despite one of those previous posts being Minister for Foreign Affairs which meant that he was constantly in and out of Belfast.