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Ireland Election leads to collapse of Votegate probe

09:15  15 january  2020
09:15  15 january  2020 Source:   independent.ie

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar could call general election for next month

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Ethics inquiries into three Fianna Fáil TDs involved in the Votegate controversy have collapsed with the dissolution of the 32nd Dáil.

The Oireachtas confirmed that all inquiries by the Dáil Members' Interests Committee fall with the General Election under way.

Fine Gael's complaints against Fianna Fáil TDs Niall Collins and Timmy Dooley and the party's Brexit spokesperson Lisa Chambers were being considered.

Related: For all the election 2020 news, reaction and analysis, click HERE

Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin said it was "regrettable" that the inquiries were not finalised but would not be drawn on whether they should be taken up in the next Dáil.

Leo Varadkar refuses to rule out the Dail not returning next week as General Election looms

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The committee had made no final decision on Mr Dooley and Mr Collins, who were both removed from the Fianna Fáil frontbench after the Irish Independent revealed that Mr Collins voted six times for Mr Dooley who was not present in the Dáil chamber last October.

Ms Chambers has been the subject of a complaint after footage showed seven votes being attributed to Mr Dooley while she was sitting in his place in a Dáil voting block last year. Mr Dooley said he was in chamber at the time.

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Varadkar's plea: give me four more months .
Taoiseach Leo Varadkar will turn to controversial Independent TDs Noel Grealish and Michael Lowry in a bid to cling to power for the next four months. Mr Varadkar is under pressure from his ministers to put distance between recent controversies, including the Black and Tans debacle, and the forthcoming general election.

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