SINN FEIN president Mary Lou McDonald has overtaken Tanaiste Leo Varadkar in the latest opinion polls to emerge as Ireland’s most popular political leader.
McDonald leapfrogged Varadkar despite Sinn Féin slipping back slightly in the newly-published Ireland Thinks/Irish Mail on Sunday poll.
Sinn Féin remains the most popular party, however, with 28% of the support among those polled, ahead of Fine Gael (25.6%) and Fianna Fáil (14.7%).
All three experienced slight drops in popularity with Sinn Féin down 1.3% and Fine Gael down 2.6%.
Support for the Social Democrats climbed up 1% to 5.7%, just ahead of the Labour Party, which is on 4.9%.
While there was good news for the Greens, who rose 1.6% to 4.5%, Eamon Ryan ranked as the leader popular of the main party leaders.
The Greens remained just ahead of Peadar Tóibín’s Aontú at 4.1%, with Solidarity-People Before Profit virtually on 3.1%, Independents up 0.9 to 7.4% and Others up slightly to 2%.
When it came to assessing the performance of Ireland’s main public figures, Chief Medical Officer Dr Tony Holohan remained the most popular, despite his rating slipping slightly from 7.1 out of 10 to 6.3.
Varadkar was also down from 4.6 to 4.3, followed by McDonald, who slipped from 4.5 to 4.4.
Taoiseach Micheál Martin fell from 3.9 to 3.8.
The biggest “climber” wasLabour leader Alan Kelly was up slightly from 3.5 to 3.6.
Health Minister Stephen Donnelly, meanwhile, suffered the biggest drop falling from 3.2 to 2.8 out of 10 in the poll.