Eamon Ryan Steps Down as Leader of Ireland’s Green Party Amid Electoral Setbacks

Dublin, Ireland – June 19, 2024: Eamon Ryan, the leader of Ireland’s Green Party, has announced his resignation, marking the second leadership departure in the Republic’s coalition government this year. His decision follows significant losses for the Green Party in the recent local and European elections, where they lost both of their MEP seats and saw their number of local councillors halved.

Mr. Ryan, who has been at the helm of the Green Party since 2011 and has represented Dublin Bay South in the Dáil (Irish parliament) since 2016, will continue in his role as environment and climate minister. He cited the need to “pass the torch to a new generation of leaders” as a primary reason for stepping down, emphasizing that the party’s focus should remain on critical issues such as affordable housing, healthcare reform, and climate action.

“I am proud of what we have achieved,” Ryan stated outside Leinster House. “We have championed climate justice on the world stage for developing countries. However, I can no longer work the long hours required of a public representative due to my parenting commitments at home.”

Mr. Ryan also noted the challenges of leading the party amidst a hostile environment, particularly on social media. He highlighted the coordinated online attacks and personal abuse he faced, including vile comments about his recently deceased father. Despite these challenges, he expressed optimism about the future of democracy beyond the polarizing online world.

At the Dáil, Taoiseach Simon Harris praised Mr. Ryan’s contributions, describing him as “an honest, sincere, dedicated, and decent politician” who has had a positive impact on Irish politics. Harris acknowledged Ryan’s significant role in the coalition government and expressed respect and understanding for his decision to step down.

Mr. Ryan’s resignation follows the earlier departure of Leo Varadkar as Fine Gael leader in April, adding to the political shifts within Ireland’s coalition government.

As the Green Party prepares for new leadership, the focus remains on tackling the pressing issues facing Ireland, ensuring a smooth transition, and maintaining momentum in the areas of climate action and sustainable development.

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