Is it party time again?

Rumours of the emergence of a new Irish political party have intensified over recent weeks but getting it off the ground won't be easy, writes Pat Leahy.

6th July, 2013
The Progressive Democrats' first public meeting in Sutton, north Dublin, in 1986. Photo: Derek Speirs

Even by the standards of Leinster House, the rumour was a feverish one. The Fine Gael anti-abortion rebels were going to start a new centre-right party. There have been several incarnations of it in recent weeks.

The new party would be socially and fiscally conservative, combining disaffection with Labour's influence on the coalition's economic policy with a strong pro-life ethos. It would campaign for a referendum to overturn the X case judgment. It would tear...

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