Irish leader forced to defend govt future amid golf scandal

LONDON (AP) — Ireland’s prime minister has been forced to defend the future of his government as criticism mounted over a golf event attended by senior politicians despite a ban on large gatherings designed to slow the spread of COVID-19. Micheal Martin, during a 40-minute grilling by national broadcaster RTE, welcomed public outrage over the event, which has already led to the resignation of two officials, because he said it underscored the need for everyone to combat  coronavirus. But he sought to focus attention on the government’s legislative record, not speculation that his coalition will collapse over the scandal. More than 80 people attended a golf club dinner in Galway a day after the Irish government banned large gatherings.