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Tag Archives: Fine Gael

Conway critical of “disastrous” Fine Gael campaign

Fine Gael Senator Martin Conway has criticised what he has described as a “disastrous” Fine Gael election campaign nationally, however, he said he is hopeful of a positive Clare result. He said he felt sympathy for Clare County Councillor Mary Howard who he said was “put on the back foot” by Fine Gael by putting her forward as a General Election candidate too late. Senator Conway said he believes he could have performed well and attracted a significant vote if he had been chosen and the North Clare and West Clare areas were left “wide open” for Dr Michael Harty and other candidates by deciding not to select him. He said he believes Fine Gael made a “big mistake” by not selecting him but he is relatively confident Fine Gael can claim two seats. “Nationally at the moment it has been a disastrous election for Fine Gael. Our message clearly hasn’t resonated with the people. You could be forgiven for …

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2011 election date cost FF

ON the brink of General Election 2016 polling day, a former Clare TD has revealed how Fianna Fáil paid a heavy price for a wrong call on fixing a date for the 2011 election. Fianna Fáil election strategists cost the party up to 30 additional seats over the timing of the 2011 General Election, former Defence Minister Tony Killeen has claimed. In an interview during a Clare Champion-hosted General Election 2016 discussion, Mr Killeen laid bare for the first time the main factors that led to the dramatic meltdown for Fianna Fáil, which went from 78 to just 20 Dáil seats in the last election. Mr Killeen, who had been principal at Kilnaboy National School prior to entering politics, also revealed he would be dead if he had contested a snap election in December 2010, instead of February 25, 2011, as he was battling cancer at the time. Mr Killeen announced his retirement from politics on health grounds ahead of …

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Fine Gael top Facebook chat in Clare

NEW data released by Facebook has revealed that Fine Gael are the most discussed political party on Facebook in Clare since November. Across the county, Labour were the second most discussed party while Fianna Fáil are in third spot. Sinn Féin come fourth in the rankings for conversations in Clare, followed by the Green Party, then Renua, the Social Democrats, the Anti Austerity Alliance and the People Before Profit Alliance. Facebook’s data, published with less than two weeks to polling day, has also revealed that infrastructure, health and the economy were the most discussed election-related issues in Clare. After that came social welfare, crime and corruption, flooding, education, housing and abortion. In terms of personality politics, Taoiseach Enda Kenny was the most discussed political leader in Clare, with Tánaiste Joan Burton coming second. Gerry Adams of Sinn Féin was third in the county ahead of Fianna Fáil’s Micheál Martin. Eamon Ryan of the Green Party was the fifth most discussed …

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Mary Howard joins Dáil race

  Clare County Councillor, Mary Howard has been officially declared as the third Fine Gael (FG) candidate to contest the forthcoming General Election in the county. Last week, speculation was rife that Councillor Howard would be added by the Fine Gael National Executive Council to the party ticket in Clare at the weekend and has proved to be correct. The former Ennis Town Councillor stated it is a “huge honour” to be asked and also to be considered capable of being part of the local FG team. Despite her late entry into the race, she is looking forward to working with her running mates outgoing FG deputies Pat Breen and Joe Carey to maximise the party’s vote in Clare. “I love my job and my county and I would really love to take it to the next level. I have a proven track record of a strong work ethic and I am a team player thus I would love for …

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Conway has no plans to go independent

CLARE Fine Gael Senator Martin Conway said he has no immediate plans to run as an independent candidate if he is not selected as one of the party’s candidates at their Dáil selection convention this Friday night. Speculation has been rife that the Ennistymon-based Senator might run as an independent if he is not chosen on the ticket. However, Senator Conway is confident that he will get a chance to run for Fine Gael at the next election and feels he should be added as a third candidate, if he is unsuccessful at convention. Asked if he would run as an independent candidate, he said, “No one can predict the future. Running as an independent is a situation I wouldn’t countenance. I have no immediate plans to run as an independent. “I believe my performance over the last few years, my proven vote-getting record and my geographical position makes a strong case for why I should be part of the …

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Minister Pat Breen

Breen rejects FF claims on Free Travel

Fianna Fáil claims regarding the future of the Free Travel Scheme have been dismissed by Clare TD Pat Breen. “This issue arises every year ahead of the Budget and it is only scare mongering to suggest that the Free Travel Scheme will not be protected by this Government,” the Fine Gael deputy said. Mr Breen said it was Fianna Fáil who imposed a cap on funding for the scheme under their National Recovery Plan, 2011-2014. “In spite of the tight budgetary restrictions over the past few years, this Government has managed to protect the scheme and we are committed to its full retention,” he said. The scheme provides free travel for all people living in the State aged 66 years or over, as well those who are in receipt of certain social welfare payments. There are currently 828,000 people who have direct eligibility and €77 million is expended on the Scheme annually. “I am very much appreciate the importance of …

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Howard throws hat into the ring

ENNIS Councillor Mary Howard has joined the race to receive the Fine Gael nomination at the party’s convention to decide its general election candidates, saying, “I’ve proved myself”. The councillor joins sitting TDs Joe Carey and Pat Breen and Senators Tony Mulcahy and Martin Conway in seeking the party’s nomination on September 11. Speaking to The Clare Champion, Councillor Howard said the decision to seek nomination is something that she has been thinking over for some time. “I’ve been mulling it over in my mind, I love what I do and I see my future within Fine Gael. I absolutely love my job within Clare County Council but I thought now is the time to put my hat in the ring. “I believe that I’ve proved myself over the last six years. I’ve worked hard and I have been very involved in my community. A lot of people have asked me would I go forward and when you hear that …

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Conway makes case for FG nomination

A date has been set for the Fine Gael convention to select candidates to run for the General Election in Clare. The convention will take place on September 11 in Ennis, with the county’s two sitting TDs, Deputies Pat Breen and Joe Carey, likely to receive the nod. Senators Tony Mulcahy and Martin Conway have both said they will seek the party’s nomination. Clare County Councillor Mary Howard may also seek to have her name put forward. Senator Mulcahy was on the ticket in the 2011 General Election but was not elected, while Senator Conway had expressed his desire to run for Fine Gael on that occasion but was not selected as a candidate. “In 2009, I topped polls in local elections with a significant surplus. I wasn’t running in the subsequent General Election, even though a senior cabinet minister living seven miles away from me had said he would not be running, so it left a vacuum. Fine Gael …

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