Why do people enter political life?

Sir, – I was saddened by the opinions expressed by a letter writer (July 2nd) who asks if the craving for power shown by those in politics is worth it, given the criticism targeted at those who win elections.

I have rarely encountered that craving of power she refers to. It was not a craving for power that drove me to contest elections. Driven by my involvement in local and national campaigns, I sought a place at the legislative table on behalf of our citizens. I hope I served those citizens well. – Yours, etc,


(Former TD and


minister for education),


Co Dublin.

Sir, – Surely a function, not the only one but an important one nonetheless, of those who hold political office is to be the focus of public criticism.

There were times that I blamed Enda Kenny for pretty much everything that was wrong in the country. It wasn’t always fair but it did help my mood.

Now it’s Micheál Martin’s turn. In time I may regard Mr Martin with the same good-humoured respect that I now hold for Mr Kenny. – Yours, etc,



Co Wicklow.

Sir, – It cannot be much fun being a magnet for every crank, eccentric and seller of charity raffle tickets in the vicinity.

Most of the people we elect are doing their best. If we don’t like them, we can vote them out.

Or we can stand for election ourselves and see if we can do a better job. – Yours, etc,


Dublin 14.