Fitzpatrick and Brady selected for Dublin Central
FF CANDIDATE SELECTION:FIANNA FÁIL TD Cyprian Brady and Cllr Mary Fitzpatrick were selected to run for the party in Dublin Central last night.
Once a hotly contested constituency controlled for many years by former taoiseach Bertie Ahern, the selection last night was a sedate affair.
Delegates knew before entering the packed room, from which media were excluded, that headquarters had decided the two candidates would run.
Mr Brady said he was pleased to have been selected for the ticket.
He said he would be asking the organisation to take on a tough task. The pitch in Dublin Central was completely changed, he said, and it was vital the party maintained as much as possible the very strong Fianna Fáil vote that was always in Dublin Central.
Ms Fitzpatrick said she wanted to play her part in renewing politics for the people. It was critical that the constituency had a strong and constructive voice in opposition, and not just opposition for opposition’s sake.
“If elected I can be that voice,” she said.
Arriving late to the meeting, Mr Ahern told media his loyalty was to Mr Brady, who had worked with him “since he was a kid”.
“I think I would be a traitor if I didn’t back him,” he said.
Asked if he thought there were two seats for the party in the constituency, he said there was not a hope.
“To be honest I worry about whether we will get one. We got 45 or 46 per cent of the vote. If you believe the polls we are on 10 today; not a nice position to be in.”
Mr Ahern said he was personally “a bit sad” because it was the first time since 1973 that he would not be on the ticket in the constituency.
“I didn’t have too much of a decision, and the historical position in Fianna Fáil has been if you are no longer the leader or the taoiseach you don’t run.”
He said he would be canvassing in Dublin Central and in neighbouring constituencies.
He paid tribute to his brother Noel Ahern, who announced he would not be running in Dublin North West last night, saying he was a very hard working politician.
“Both of us, if we were running, we would have been elected,” he said.
He refused to be drawn on who he would vote for as new leader of the party.
“All four people I appointed to Cabinet for the first time. They are all good friends, and only one of them can win.”
Mr Ahern denied any responsibility for Fianna Fáil’s current troubles.
“The party was strong the day I left,” he said. And it would try to “win back power in 2015”.
He also said the election would be held on February 25th.