Whelan: Call for Gilmore's resignation 'appallingly bad timing'

Labour politicians are this morning defending their party leader Eamon Gilmore, after an MEP called on him to resign.

Phil Prendergast says an urgent change of leadership is needed if the party is to avoid a wipe-out at the European and local elections.

However, her party colleagues say Ms Prendergast is suffering from a 'speed bump' after a poor showing in the weekend's opinion polls.

Labour senator John Whelan says there's no point trying to change leader just three weeks before the elections.

Senator Whelan said: "There are always consequences after eleections and if the Labour Party have a poor outing and return no Euro MEPS for instance, of course there will be a post mortem and of course there will be soul searching and I would say very serious consequences.

"This is just appalingly bad timing to start questioning the leadership, and to start challenging for a leadership issue three weeks from an election makes no sense whatsoever."

Labour TD for Clare, Michael McNamara, says he is surprised by Prendergast's comments.

He says she has had plenty of opportunity to air her views in the past.

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