The odds of Cork South-Central TD Micheál Martin becoming the next Taoiseach have been cut following a weekend poll showing his party is significantly more popular than Fine Gael.
A Behaviour & Attitudes survey for The Sunday Times showed Fianna Fáil with a five-point lead over Leo Varadkar’s Fine Gael.
The level of support for Fianna Fáil remained at 28% for the third month in a row, while support for the party of Government fell to 23%, down 5% since the last poll.
As a result, BoyleSports have shortened the odds on Mr Martin becoming the next Taoiseach to even money.
“Fianna Fail have continued their momentum after a hugely successful local election result and their leader Michael Martin has latched onto the positivity surrounding his party and has moved into 1/1 from 11/10 to become the next Taoiseach,” Leon Blanche, Head of Communications for BoyleSports said.
The bookmaker suggested recent controversies surrounding Fine Gael TDs and insurance claims have hurt the party in the polls.
“Leo Varadkar is constantly in the news trying to defend his Fine Gael colleagues and has drifted to 4/5 from 4/6 to retain Taoiseach role,” Mr Blanche added.
Support for Fine Gael is now at the lowest level since Mr Varadkar became Taoiseach two years ago.
Mr Martin’s personal satisfaction rating was down two to 46% in the poll but that still leaves him ahead of Mr Varadkar, who was down three to 39%.
There was also bad news for Sinn Féin. The party, which fared badly in recent local and European elections, is down seven points, to 12%. Leader Mary Lou McDonald’s satisfaction rating also fell by seven, to 32%.
The biggest increase in satisfaction went to the resurgent Green Party, who were up six points to 11%. Support for Labour increased by one point, to 5%