Leo Varadkar calls general election for Saturday, February 8 6 days ago

Leo Varadkar calls general election for Saturday, February 8

Mark the calendars, etc.

Leo Varadkar has called a general election for Saturday, February 8.

The Taoiseach confirmed the spring election date this afternoon following a briefing with his Cabinet.

He will attend Áras an Uachtaráin later today to meet President Michael D Higgins and formally seek a dissolution of the Dáil.

"I always said that the election should happen at the best time for the country," said Varadkar. "Now is that time."

This comes after campaign posters featuring Varadkar's face were spotted being erected in Dublin this morning.

Posters depicting Labour's Kevin Humphries that were put up outside the Dáil earlier today have since been removed.

Opposition leader Micheál Martin said that the general election will give Fianna Fáil the opportunity to engage in some "on the ground" campaigning.

"Things are simply not working in this country in so many areas," he said.

"Particularly in terms of housing - the inability of people to afford houses, housing prices and housing rents are simply far too high and there is a deep, deep crisis of homelessness right across every level of housing.

"In health, again, we have a very serious crisis in terms of emergency departments and in terms of people waiting far too long for operations and procedures and for out-patient departments."