Richard Colwell: Bread-and-butter concerns are more important to voters than left-right dogma

Support is gravitating to Sinn Féin not because of its political ideology, but because more and more people believe it is the party best placed to effect real change

Mary Lou McDonald, president, Sinn Féin: support for the party doesn’t naturally fall into a left-right spectrum

A long-running question in Irish politics has been whether there is a left-right political spectrum among voters here. For many years, the political landscape has been dominated by two large parties in Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael, neither of which could be categorised as being on the left side of the political spectrum.

The rise of Sinn Féin has been interpreted by some commentators as Irish voters moving towards a more traditional European left-right political ...