herald

Friday 20 October 2017

Browne will say sorry for Enda gun gaffe

tv host Vincent Browne will tonight issue a grovelling apology after telling Enda Kenny to shoot himself.

The controversial broadcaster is to air the apology after commenting last week that the Fine Gael leader should go into a dark room with a revolver and a bottle of whiskey.

The controversy emerged as the Herald learned that Richard Bruton is ready to make a second heave against Mr Kenny.

Mr Browne's comments have caused outrage within Fine Gael's hierarchy and even prompted Senator Paddy Burke to lodge an official complaint with the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (BAI).

It will now review last Thursday's episode of Tonight with Vincent Browne and could force a more formal withdrawal of the remarks.



Silly

In an effort to pre-empt that investigation, Mr Browne admitted: "Yes it was a silly, inconsiderate remark to make and I will be apologising for it on the programme on Monday night."

The journalist has openly criticised the politician in the past, most notably during last June's attempted ousting.

But there is widespread agreement within FG that his latest comments went too far.

Senator Burke said: "It's unbelievable that he said that, particularly in the environment we're in and the number of suicides we have at the moment."

In a letter to the Herald, an irate viewer also condemned the "outrageous and flippant" remarks, describing them as "an insult to the numerous families throughout the country who are trying to come to terms with the suicide of a loved one".

Meanwhile, the turmoil around Mr Kenny's leadership looks set to continue as a significant rump of TDs and senators considers a second heave.

The Herald understands that despite previous pledges not to launch a second public attack on Mr Kenny, Richard Bruton is now prepared to do so.

However, a source revealed that many of those who backed Mr Bruton in the botched coup are unwilling to openly denounce the leader again.

Today, the party's justice spokesperson, Alan Shatter, strongly rejected suggestions of unhappiness, accusing the media of engaging "in fiction".

kdoyle@herald.ie

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