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Tag Archives: Dáil

Crowe up and running in Dáil race

Councillor Cathal Crowe may become one of the youngest public representatives to contest the next general election in Clare but he chose an old style Fianna Fáil rally-type event to officially launch his bid on Wednesday afternoon. Standing on an open top trailer surrounded by political posters from the last three local elections, Councillor Crowe also turned back the clock by launching his election campaign outside the home of the last Dáil deputy from South-East Clare, Paddy Brennan. The fact that the Brennans were Free Staters and staunch Cumann na nGaedheal members didn’t deter the 34-year-old from declaring his intention to run in the next general election at Brennan’s Cross in Meelick. The passionate historian recalled that while on the run, the Brennans often took shelter at his grandparents’ house in Woodcock Hill, just three miles from the cross. With former Clare hurler Niall Gilligan providing the warm-up speech, Councillor Crowe then outlined his vision. “For 95 years, this corner …

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Dr Harty attacks HSE on Grace case

Clare TD, Dr. Michael Harty launched a stinging attack on the HSE in the Dáil on their handling of the “Grace” case. “The Grace case illustrates a lack of proper governance, accountability and transparency within the HSE. It amply illustrates the dysfunctionality that exists in the HSE.” “HSE management has lost the trust and respect of the general public, which depends on it to provide good governance and good leadership,” he said. Dr Harty said the Grace case illustrates what happens in the HSE when a problem is found. “First, there is a failure to recognise that a problem exists even though it is readily identifiable. The HSE continues to compound the error when it has been identified. It denies that the problem exists even when whistleblowers have uncovered the shortcomings. It sets up commissions of inquiry – and in this case two commissions of inquiry – and then delays the publication for several years on the grounds of due …

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Harty raises sex offenders issue in Dáil

CLARE Independent TD Dr Michael Harty has raised, under a Dáil question, the issue of accessing a national sex offenders’ register. Dr Harty asked Tánaiste and Minister for Justice and Equality, Frances Fitzgerald “the reason there is not a national sex offenders register available for inspection; and if she will make a statement on the matter.” The minister outlined that gardaí may disclose to the public information regarding a convicted sex offender “where it is considered that such person poses a risk”. In her full statement, Minister Fitzgerald said, “I can advise the deputy that the relevant legislation in this regard is contained in Part 2 of the Sex Offenders Act 2001, which makes persons convicted of a range of sexual offences subject to notification requirements. All offenders who are subject to the notification requirements are monitored by the Sex Offender Management and Intelligence Unit (SOMIU) at the Garda National Bureau of Criminal Investigation. The unit is supported by Garda Inspectors …

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Harty frustrated over lack of engagement

Clare independent TD Dr Michael Harty has expressed his frustration over the failure of Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael to engage in meaningful discussions about supporting a new minority government led by the other party. Dr Harty has also confirmed no agreement has been reached between five rural independent deputies and Fine Gael or Fianna Fáil to support a new rainbow coalition. However, both parties have agreed to the proposed introduction of a new rural affairs minister with a substantial budget. According to Dr Harty, one of the main tasks of the new minister is to “rural-proof” proposed decisions taken by other government departments to assess their impact on rural communities. The Kilmihil-based deputy has joined Deputy Michael Collins from West Cork; Denis Naughton, Roscommon; Mattie McGrath, Tipperary and Noel Grealish, Galway, in a team of rural deputies who have held discussions with Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil about a potential government partnership agreement. Dr Harty said the group, which …

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Labour Party denies blocking McNamara’s Seanad bid

WHILE Michael McNamara claimed last week that the Labour Party leadership went out of its way to stop him running for election to the Seanad, the party has denied anything underhand has happened. Also, Seamus Ryan, who served as director of elections for Labour in Clare, has defended the party, saying it is no longer in a strong enough position to be putting forward multiple candidates. In a post on social media last week, Mr McNamara wrote, “If there was a democratic contest for the party nomination on the Agricultural Panel, I think I’d have won. So did the party leadership, so there was no contest.” Also, in an interview last week, Mr McNamara, referring to senior figures in the party, said, “It’s quite clear that not alone did I not have their backing but they went out of their way to prevent me from running”. He also claimed that he was being paid back for not being what he …

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Dress to impress in the Dáil

Mick Wallace, Richard Boyd Barrett and a couple of other outgoing TDs, if re-elected, could well face another drive to oblige them to wear ties in the Dáil chamber. Senator Lorraine Higgins has called for an Oireachtas dress code to be introduced following General Election 2016. The Galway senator said, “It is unacceptable that members of Dáil and Seanad Éireann would enter the chambers of our national parliament dressed in unsuitable attire.” She noted in 2011, the Oireachtas Committee on Procedures and Privileges drafted a proposal requesting TDs and Senators wear ‘appropriate business attire’ in their function as legislators. “This has clearly not been heeded and a small cohort of deputies continue to dress in an unprofessional manner, unbefitting of our national parliament. ‘’I am calling today on the Taoiseach and Ceann Comhairle to meet prior to the formation of the next Dáil with a view to agreeing a set of rules governing the standards of dress acceptable so that incumbent members of the Oireachtas know what to expect.” she said. “I have always taken my position …

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GP candidate will enter Dáil race

Clare GPs have delivered a political bombshell following their decision to field a candidate in the forthcoming general election. It’s a decision that will make the constituency one of the most keenly contested in the country. The Clare Champion can exclusively reveal that a local doctor will officially launch their general election campaign at a public meeting in Corofin community hall next Tuesday night at 8pm. Two weeks ago, the ‘Champion was the first media outlet to flag the possibility of a local doctor contesting the next general election in the four-seater Clare constituency. GPs are remaining tight-lipped about the identity of the candidate, who will be unveiled to the public at this meeting, which looks set to attract another full house 12 days after more than 450 doctors, public representatives and members of the public attended a second meeting in the “no doctor, no village” national campaign. The dramatic entry of a GP candidate has sent shockwaves through the …

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No Dáil bid for Flynn

Shannon-based county councillor Gerry Flynn has decided against running for the Dáil. The independent councillor said he made the decision with a heavy heart but had concluded that it wasn’t possible for him to win a seat, particularly with support for Fine Gael rising. He predicted that the electorate will punish Labour but that Fine Gael will perform well and will probably hold onto their two Clare seats. Councillor Flynn said finance is part of the reason for not running. “I have thought long and hard about it, I’ve looked at the opinion polls. I have also costed how much I would need. I’d have to have approximately €30,000 at my disposal to even think about it. The parties are funded by the taxpayer but, for me, it would be like climbing Mount Everest 10 times. There was no way Gerry Flynn was going to enter any race unless I thought I was going to win. From an economic perspective, …

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