Katherine Zappone says reports of a rift at Cabinet do not reflect what is really going on.

Reports say Fine Gael TDs are concerned that her plans for childcare will only benefit low income families and not middle earners.

Katherine Zappone said they are still negotiating, saying: “The story doesn’t reflect the reailty of what is going on in terms of Budget negotiations. I am in very intense and serious negotiations with Mr Donohoe, I don’t know where these phantom sources are coming from.

“It doesn’t reflect at all what is going on, the negotiations have been amicable, firm.

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