Simon Harris stands by Frances Fitzgerald

Health Minister Simon Harris has said he thinks “this country doesn’t need a general election.”

Speaking to RTÉ News, Harris stood by Frances Fitzgerald and said: “I think everybody in Irish politics today needs to step back from the brink. It’s a day for cool heads, it’s a day for calm reflection, and we need to try and have a situation where our government can continue so we can focus on the very big jobs at hand.”

He also said the Tribunal will be holding its public hearings in a few weeks’ time which will provide a public opportunity for all the issues to be heard “in a fair manner”. He added that the Tánaiste will have an opportunity then to answer any questions put to her.

Speaking to Claire Byrne on RTÉ Radio 1 during the week, Harris was quoted as saying Fitzgerald is “absolutely not (considering resigning), nor should she… it’s more about Fianna Fail trying to mark Sinn Féin than anything to do with the national interest.”

He also questioned the reasons for holding a General Election “at such a precarious time”.

Tánaiste Fitzgerald is being pushed to resign as the crisis over her handling of a policing scandal deepens.

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