Pat Kenny, General Election 2020, Taoiseach

Pat Kenny, General Election 2020

Larissa Nolan: 'I'm still laughing at Leo's bumbling response to drugs question'

Larissa Nolan: Leo Varadkar's bumbling response to drugs question during leaders' debate was hilarious

24.1.2020

Larissa Nolan: Leo Varadkar's bumbling response to drugs question during leaders' debate was hilarious

'Nobody is suggesting young people shouldn’t have the freedom to make mistakes and learn – but if they’re going to lecture us about an issue, they should not be afraid to come clean about their own pasts'

Was Pat Kenny right to ask the Taoiseach if he had ever taken drugs? Who cares? It was hilarious. I’m still laughing at Leo Varadkar’s rabbit-in-the-headlights response when the master broadcaster threw the question in at the end for the element of surprise. “Hot Pless, Het Prass, Hot Press,” Leo stumbled and bumbled, while trying to say that he had answered the question in a Hot Press interview years ago. Pat followed up with: “Which is?” – prompting four seconds of silence when Leo looked like he’d soiled his onesie. Virgin Media reporter Gavan Reilly quipped it felt more like decades. It wasn’t just the moment of the Leader’s Debate, it was arguably the moment of the campaign – at least in terms of political satire. Even Micheal Martin couldn’t stop himself laughing. The whole country was in knots. This is why we watch these live debates – for these awkward moments. It’s pure theatre. And for about four seconds there, I felt a bit sorry for Leo Varadkar. It’s not about whether or not Leo took drugs. It’s not a judgement call. It’s about his reaction. An excellent debater, and usually so sure-footed, this threw him into a tailspin. It’s why politicians are rightly afraid of being interviewed by Pat Kenny. Whether Kenny had a right to ask it or not has become a matter of debate. Some – like Fr Peter McVerry – said it’s unfair to judge what people did when they were young. It’s a fair point. The practice of “offence archaeology” - digging into politicians’ past in order to shame and scandalise them – is toxic and is a horrible feature of US politics. Nobody is suggesting young people shouldn’t have the freedom to make mistakes and learn – but if they’re going to lecture us about an issue, they should not be afraid to come clean about their own pasts. We are living through a very serious crime problem driven by cocaine use, often by a middle class who can’t – or don’t want to - join the dots from their habit to the murders of young boys caught up in the drugs underworld. How to follow the Irish Mirror on social media You can like our main Facebook page here. Our Irish Mirror Sports page - which brings you all your Irish and UK sports news - can be found here. You can also check out our Irish Mirror GAA sports page. The Irish Mirror Twitter account is @IrishMirror while our sports account is @MirrorSportIE. Our Instagram account can be found here. Pat Kenny isn’t unique in asking the question. Last Summer’s Conservative leader election in the UK was marked by a series of revelations by candidates on what drugs they had taken, after Rory Stewart admitted smoking opium in Iran 15 years ago. It’s no bad thing to force politicians to reflect on their own possible hypocrisy. But it would deflect from the real issues if we were to go down the road of over-focusing on what Leo did back in the Millennium. Meantime, it was a great laugh in a TV debate that could have otherwise been dull. I’ll never look at the hot press in the same way again. Read more: Irish Daily Mirror

Larissa Nolan: TV debates freezing out only female leader isn't a good look'Mary-Lou McDonald won’t be up there with them, despite the fact opinion polls show all three parties are more or less neck and neck' Did you just assume SF leaders gender? sinnfeinireland Playing the old victim gender card

Varadkar's response to illegal drugs question – Will it have an influence over the election? - Independent.ieThe clip has taken social media by storm this morning. Will it have an influence on the election, and what other political figures are reported as having used illegal substances in thei It will - a positive one... Maybe he was coerced, or made a mistake or regrets it, didn't realize the significance it had...there could be any number of reasons - social pressure being another one. Cheap shot .... I’m not a fan but at least it was an honest answer ! I’d prefer an honest answer instead of the usual denial with a cheesy grin !!

Taoiseach: Every politician is allowed a 'private life and a private past'The Taoiseach Leo Varadkar has said he is not in favour of the decriminalisation of drugs. LeoVaradkar ... as is every citizen, men , women and children, also allowed a roof over their heads , food on their table , healthcare , feel safe etc . etc have a joint man .

Taoiseach: Every politician is allowed a 'private life and a private past'The Taoiseach Leo Varadkar has said he is not in favour of the decriminalisation of drugs.

Larissa Nolan: TV debates freezing out only female leader isn't a good look'Mary-Lou McDonald won’t be up there with them, despite the fact opinion polls show all three parties are more or less neck and neck' Did you just assume SF leaders gender? sinnfeinireland Playing the old victim gender card

Watch as Leo Varadkar stumbles over 'illegal drug' question on TV debate General Election 2020 : Watch as Taoiseach Leo Varadkar stumbles over 'illegal drug' question on Virgin Media TV debate VMTVBigDebate



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