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Fine Gael backs Ireland’s 3-party coalition deal

Fine Gael backs Ireland’s 3-party coalition deal

The Fine Gael party of Irish acting PM Leo Varadkar became the first of three potential government partners on Friday to ratify a coalition deal. The votes of Fianna Fail and Green Party members are still being counted.

Lawmakers from Ireland’s two dominant center-right parties agreed to govern together for the first time, in a deal that will put the Greens at the center of policymaking. The agreement will also end a political stalemate triggered by an inconclusive election in February.

The smaller Green Party require two-thirds support – a higher bar than the larger parties, which could still scupper the agreement struck between their leaders last week, Reuters said. Fine Gael approved the deal by a margin of 80 to 20 percent.

Fianna Fail’s Micheal Martin is expected to become prime minister for the first half of a five-year term and then hand the premiership back to Varadkar in December 2022, under a novel rotation agreement between the historic rivals.