Talks could get prickly as political porcupines face off

Varadkar’s agreement to a second meeting with Martin reinforces the view that Fine Gael is willing to cut a deal, but it could take time

Micheál Martin is joined by Thomas Byrne as he addresses the media after today’s meeting with Leo Varadkar. Picture:

The old joke about how porcupines mate came to mind as Micheál Martin briefed the media today about his meeting with Leo Varadkar.

The answer to that gag – “very carefully” – summed up the mood as to how the two parties’ pre-negotiation negotiations are proceeding.

According to the Fianna Fáil leader, Varadkar repeated Fine Gael’s well-worn line that the party wants to go into opposition.

Despite this, the Taoiseach agreed to meet Martin again, ...