Mary Hanafin added to Fianna Fáil ticket in Dún Laoghaire

Former minister lost out narrowly to Cormac Devlin in party selection convention

Former minister Mary Hanafin who has been added to the Fianna Fáil ticket in  the Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown constituency. Photograph: The Irish Times

Former minister Mary Hanafin who has been added to the Fianna Fáil ticket in the Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown constituency. Photograph: The Irish Times

 

Fianna Fáil has added Councillor Mary Hanafin to the ticket in Dún Laoghaire.

Ms Hanafin had narrowly lost out at the selection convention to councillor Cormac Devlin.

In a statement, Mr Devlin had said it was his belief one candidate was preferable.

The party confirmed Ms Hanafin will now contest the election for Fianna Fáil.

Ms Hanafin was ahead after the first count by 60 votes to 52, but was overtaken by Mr Devlin, who benefitted from the transfers of the third candidate, Kate Feeney.

Ms Feeney received 21 first preference votes. Only four of her transfers went to Ms Hanafin.

Internal polling conducted by Fianna Fáil has shown that Ms Hanafin represents the best chance of the party retaking a seat in this predominantly middle-class constituency.

Though nominally a four-seater, it is also the base of Ceann Comhairle Seán Barrett who is automatically re-elected, meaning Dún Laoghaire is effectively a three-seat constituency.

In a letter to constituents last week, Ms Hanafin said she believed she was best placed to win a seat given her ministerial experience.

Chairman of the National Constituencies Committee, Michael Moynihan TD, said: “With Cormac Devlin and Mary Hanafin, Fianna Fáil now has an extremely strong ticket in Dún Laoghaire.

“Both candidates have an excellent record of public service in communities across this constituency. Working together, Cormac and Mary will maximise the party’s vote in order to retake a Fianna Fáil seat in this important Dublin constituency.”

Mr Devlin: “That was the agreed strategy of the party and all three potential candidates.

“I will, nevertheless, work closely with the local organisation and Mary to ensure the party has the best possible chance of winning a seat.

“Obviously this decision dramatically reduces the chances of Fianna Fáil securing a seat in Dún Laoghaire, but this just means that myself and party members will work even harder than before.”