Following the general election in 2007, Sinn Féin returned to Leinster House having lost one of its five seats. The outcome was a surprise, not least to the Sinn Féin leadership. The disappointment was compounded in 2009 when, after an indifferent performance in the local elections, the party’s rising star in Dublin, Mary Lou McDonald, lost her seat in the European Parliament.
“Government north and south by 2016” had become the...
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