Hackett and O’Gorman secure nominations to officially enter Green Party leadership contest

Senator and Minister are expected to be only two candidates to compete for Eamon Ryan’s former position

Both Roderic O’Gorman and Pippa Hackett required 50 nominations each to be part of the selection process. Photograph: Gareth Chaney & Stephen Collins/Collins

Both of the contenders vying to be the next Green Party leader Pippa Hackett and Roderic O’Gorman have secured the required 50 nominations to enter the contest.

While the nominations period remains open until Monday night, the Cabinet colleagues are expected to be the only two candidates in the race to succeed Eamon Ryan who announced his intention to depart as party leader earlier this week.

Ms Hackett picked up some additional endorsements and has overtaken Mr O’Gorman in terms of the number of Oireachtas members backing her with five TDs or Senators openly supporting her compared to four for Mr O’Gorman.

She still trails in the number of elected representatives overall who have made a public declaration of support.

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Clare-based Senator Róisín Garvey is the latest Oireachtas member to back Ms Hackett who is a Minister of State for Agriculture and farmer in Co Offaly.

In a post on social media platform X Ms Garvey said Ms Hackett is “always up at dawn” and “always listens” adding she is “ready, willing and able to lead our party”.

She added: “rural and regional balance needed now more than ever”.

Ms Hackett’s supporters have been highlighting her rural credentials in contrast to O’Gorman who would be another Dublin-based leader for the party.

For his part Mr O’Gorman, the Minister for Children and Integration, has pushed back on suggestions that the party needs a leader from outside Dublin to improve its popularity in rural Ireland.

As well as securing the necessary 50 nominations Ms Hackett’s team also now believes she has five of the party’s elected councillors backing her.

Thirteen councillors have declared support for Mr O’Gorman.

While both sides welcome such endorsements it is the Green Party’s 4,000-plus members on both sides of the border who will have the ultimate say in who becomes leader on July 8th as the party operates a one member, one vote system.

The leader of the Green Party in Northern Ireland, Senator Malachaí O’Hara, confirmed on Friday that he will not be making a public declaration of support.

Cormac McQuinn

Cormac McQuinn

Cormac McQuinn is a Political Correspondent at The Irish Times