Longford-Westmeath TD staying coy over possible junior ministerial promotion

Longford-Westmeath TD staying coy over possible junior ministerial promotion

Longford Westmeath TD Peter Burke was last night (Tuesday) playing down his chances  of being elevated to new Taoiseach Leo Varadkar's junior ministerial ranks, writes Liam Cosgrove

Mr Varadkar was yesterday expected to announce his new Minister of State line up less than a week after taking over as party leader.

Mr Burke has been one of those rumoured to be in the shake up  for possible promotion in light of his resolute backing of Mr Varadkar during his leadership campaign.  The Mullingar based TD was not pinning his political hopes on securing a junior ministry when contacted by the Leader on Monday.

“At the end of the day it is down to the Taoiseach,” he said, citing his relative lack of experience to other candidates for promotion.

Among those more fancied include the likes of John Paul Phelan of Carlow-Kilkenny; Jim Daly of Cork South-West; and Michael D'Arcy of Wexford.

All three, like Mr Burke played a prominent role in Mr Varadkar's leadership bid and were routinely spotted at the forefront of various media opportunities undertaken by the new Taoiseach.

 That said, Mr Burke's own impressive performances under the glare of the national press and his acumen as a chartered accountant  has  sparked talk of a possible junior finance role.

“I wouldn't be confident but I also would be delighted if I did get the call,” he said.

“If your not in you can't win as they say.”

 Whatever announcements are made, Mr Varadkar will be hoping to avoid the ill-feeling felt by Mary Mitchell O'Connor following her 'demotion' to higher educationsuper junior minister.