The Civil War has been forgotten in Laois where a Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil have joined forces on Laois County Council.
In a sign that the two parties could be growing closer nationally, Fine Gael’s six county councillors today voted for Cllr John Joe Fennelly of FF as the new Cathaoirleach of Laois County Council. The coalition’s nominee, which was confirmed in County Hall Portlaoise on Friday June 5, was opposed by Independents and Sinn Féin councillors who nominated former FF councillor Brendan Phelan.
An alliance was on the cards in advance of the vote but was expected that FG would abstain. The union of the two parties is likely to mean that FF will back at least one FG councillor to be Cathaoirleach over the next five years.
The development will be good news for FG in Laois after a bruising election. The party has six less county councillors since last time around.
It also means that FG continue to hold some sway in Laois. The party had a majority group for the past 10 years but was supported on both occasions by independents and Sinn Féin.