Healy-Rae brothers issue map carving up Kerry constituency

‘We released what we’re hoping and suggesting to people is a way for them to vote’

 

Brothers and Independent candidates for Kerry, Danny and Michael Healy-Rae, have distributed a map to constituents indicating which brother should receive their first or second preference vote in different parts of the Kingdom.

“We have to have a boundary which we will be respectfully be asking everybody to adhere to rigidly, because if they don’t instead of being order there’ll be chaos in the vote,” said Michael Healy-Rae on Friday’s Inside Politics podcast.

“That’s why we released what we’re hoping and suggesting to people is a way for them to vote if they are Healy-Rae supporters. In one area we’re asking them to vote for Danny and number two for me and in the other side we’re asking them to give me a number one and Danny a number two,” the Killarney-based Independent TD said.

Also speaking on the podcast, Danny Healy-Rae, whose decision to run followed sitting TD Tom Fleming’s decision to retire, said he was asking Mr Fleming’s supporters to loan him their vote.

“I’m asking the people who would have voted for Fleming in the past. It’s a new scenario for them. I’m asking them because I’m very local,” he said.

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“Danny Healy-Rae would not be on the ballot paper if Tom Fleming had not decided to retire. And I too want to wish him well and to thank him for his years of service,” said Michael.

Michael dismissed the results of a TG4 constituency poll, released hours after Danny announced his candidacy, that put support for Michael at 33 per cent, Danny at four per cent and Martin Ferris at seven per cent, putting the Sinn Féin TD’s seat in doubt.

“Anyone who knows anything about Kerry politics knows that Martin Ferris is definitely poised and there to retain his seat, and anyone who would try and suggest anything to the contrary of that is to be honest very wide of the mark,” said Michael.

If elected the brothers would be seen as potential supporters of a Fianna Fáil or Fine Gael-led coalition. Danny would not be drawn on his position on the USC, which both parties have pledged to reduce or abolish.

“I’ll tell you the truth now, I give no credence at all to one party. I don’t know which party it is because I’m not listening to them, but I hear it going on about abolishing the universal social charge. Because what’ll they do, they’ll bring in a different charge with a different headline on it,” he said.

Michael also revealed that John Bruton offered his late father Jackie Healy-Rae the position of minister for agriculture in 1997 when trying unsuccessfully to assemble a coalition government.

“It wasn’t looking to be a minister he was, it wasn’t looking for a state car, as he said himself ‘I have my own car to carry me wherever I want to go’. What he was about was improving the situation for County Kerry, ” said Michael.