Sinn Féin TD in trouble over 'homophobic' tweet about Leo Varadkar, days after controversial IRA post

Sinn Féin TD in trouble over 'homophobic' tweet about Leo Varadkar, days after controversial IRA post

SINN Féin's Brian Stanley is in hot water for the second time in a week after a social media post about Leo Varadkar's sexuality was unearthed.

Back in 2017 when Mr Varadkar was appointed leader of Fine Gael, Stanley took to Twitter to air his feelings on the matter.

"Yippee 4 d Tory. It's Leo. U can do what u like in bed but don't look 4 a pay rise the next morning," he wrote.

News of the tweet comes just after Tánaiste Varadkar told a parliamentary meeting that a significant number of the abuse he receives on social media is either homophobic or racist.

MEP and Fine Gael member Maria Walsh questioned why Mr Varadkar's sexuality was brought up by such a senior politician.

"For the most part, we are held to a standard that is fair, balanced and as democratically elected officials, our words, be it spoken or tweeted, have consequences," she said.

"Which leaves me to question why Deputy Stanley believed it was right to connect the abilities of a party leader, a Fine Gael leadership contest and someone's sexual orientation together?

"What relevance does this have in one's ability to do a job?"

On Monday, Mr Stanley - a TD for Laois/Offally - was slammed for a "shameful" tweet about the IRA, as he appeared to celebrate two historical attacks on British soldiers, to marked the centenary of the Kilmichael Ambush during the War of Independence.

He controversially compared it to the Narrow Water massacre - an IRA attack launched in 1979 in Co. Down which left 18 British soldiers dead.

"IRA operations that taught the elite of the British army and the establishment the cost of occupying Ireland. Pity for everyone they were such slow learners," he tweeted.

The post, which was swiftly deleted, lead a number of Irish politicians to question Sinn Féin's commitment to progress and reconciliation, with Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney claiming the tweet was an example of Sinn Féin's "mask slipping".