Aontú has welcomed the decision of RTÉ to include Peadar Tóibín in the leader’s debate on Thursday. 

The party said: “RTE have confirmed that Aontú will participate in the Leaders’ debate on Thursday. This is good news.

In a free and open democracy no party should be excluded from presenting their policies to the people.”Last week, Deputy Tóibín was the only national party leader to be excluded from a televised leader’s debate, causing the party to describe the exclusion as a ‘lockout’.

In protest, Tóibín pointed out that Aontú has representation throughout the country. “We have now surpassed the Solidarity/People Before Profit alliance in the polls, are close to the Social Democrats and not far behind the Labour Party,” the party said claiming to be an “all Ireland party that is growing across all 32 counties,” with elected representatives from Wexford to Derry.

It is also a pro life party contesting the elections and that is a viewpoint some activists feel is being deliberately locked out  from the debate.

The Red C poll released this weekend seemed to spell bad news for Fine Gael.

Aontú say that it also points to a tangible rise in the party’s vote.

Red C placed Aontú nationally at 2%  – a number which, if translated to votes on the day, would gain the party the public funding which benefits other parties.

A breakdown of the poll revealed Munster support to be on 4%., with Leinster at 3%. “What that shows is that where the party has candidates it is drawing support. It is also a reflection on the strong base being built by candidates across the country,” the party said.