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Dithering minister turns into Terminator Taoiseach and takes out Fianna Fail royalty as Cowen hits road

Fionnan Sheahan


Ahead of first visit to Northern Ireland as taoiseach, Michael Martin forced to remove minister

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Barry Cowen (Niall Carson/PA)

Barry Cowen (Niall Carson/PA)

Barry Cowen (Niall Carson/PA)

The dithering minister has turned into the Terminator Taoiseach as Micheal Martin got blood on his hands. Barry Cowen's position as Agriculture Minister was "terminated" after he refused to clarify his position.

After 17 days of turmoil within the ranks of the Fianna Fail, Micheal Martin has finally asserted his authority, but it has come at an enormous cost to the credibility of his new Government.

Cowen has come under continued scrutiny for the past 11 days since it was revealed in the Irish Independent that he was banned for three months for drink-driving. But it was also causing damage to everyone else in the coalition, as ministers were continually having to stand by their man.