Running mate of Lenihan to contest Dublin West for FF

Wed, Sep 14, 2011, 01:00

FIANNA FÁIL has put forward Brian Lenihan’s general election running mate David McGuinness (25) to contest the seat vacated by the late TD in the upcoming Dublin West byelection.

Although five names had originally been put forward to contest the nomination, three candidates withdrew their names before the convention last night, leaving just two candidates – Mr McGuinness and Edward McManus, a Ballymun-based pharmacist.

Following the delegates’ vote, the nominees were tied. Under the Electoral Act, both names were entered into a ballot box and the first name pulled out was eliminated.

The three other candidates who withdrew from the race were Brenda Clifford, a former Fingal county councillor; Michael Gilvarry, a barrister; and Mary Martin, a solicitor and local party activist.

The selection convention, held in the Carlton Hotel in Blanchardstown, was chaired by Senator Daragh O’Brien.

Born in Corduff, Blanchardstown, Mr McGuinness was educated at St Patrick’s National School, Corduff, and Riversdale Community College.

He received an honours degree in music education and history from Trinity College Dublin, and teaches in Riversdale Community College, Blanchardstown.

A current Fingal County councillor, Mr McGuinness was just 22 when he was first elected to the council. He ran alongside the late Brian Lenihan as a candidate in the Dublin West constituency during the 2011 general election, securing 623 first preference votes.

Other candidates to run in the Dublin West byelection are Cllr Patrick Nulty of Labour; Cllr Ruth Coppinger of the Socialist Party; Paul Donnelly for Sinn Féin; and Roderic O’Gorman for the Green Party.

A spokeswoman for Fine Gael said the party intended holding a selection convention in coming weeks. However, Fingal County councillor Kieran Dennison has already put his name forward.

The byelection is due to take place on October 27th.