MICHÉAL Martin has jumped ahead of Sinn Féin’s Mary Lou McDonald as the most popular leader in the Republic, according to a new poll.
Ms McDonald has consistently held the top spot in recent months and remains on 49 per cent, but a new survey suggests Mr Martin’s rating has increased by three percentage points to 51 per cent.
It comes just a month before he finishes his tenure as Taoiseach with Tanaiste Leo Varadkar expected to take over on December 17.
The satisfaction level for Mr Varadkar is at 42 per cent, while the popularity of Eamon Ryan of the Green Party has dropped one point to 30 per cent.
However, the latest Sunday Times/Behaviour & Attitudes poll also suggests that Sinn Féin remains the most popular party in the Republic with support for the party remaining unchanged at 34 per cent.
Other figures reveal that Fine Gael is also unchanged at 21 per cent, while Fianna Fáil has increased by a single percentage point to 23 per cent.
The Green Party also remains at four per cent, while the Labour party has dropped one point to five per cent and the Social Democrats are on two per cent.
The poll was conducted between October 27 and November 8 with 923 voters taking part.
Meanwhile, a new poll from the Belfast Telegraph appears to suggest that support for the DUP has increased.
The survey shows the party has risen by three percentage points to 27 per cent, but are still lagging behind Sinn Féin, which is up two percentage points in the latest poll at 32 per cent in the north.
The gap between Sinn Féin and the DUP at the Assembly election in May was eight per cent. But it appears, according to the new poll, that the gap now lessened slightly to five per cent.
The UUP is down two percentage points in the latest survey to nine per cent with Alliance also down one percentage point to 15 per cent.