Pride gets an Edge as election results go every which way… and loose

by Gazette Reporter
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Three sitting councillors won on the very first count at Weston Airport, including Alan Edge (independent), with Brian Lawlor (Fine Gael) and Emma Murphy (Fianna Fáil) also proving to be big winners at the ballot box.

“I’m here in my Pride colours, it is Pride month and I think it’s really important that we never take Pride for granted and what that means,” said sitting Mayor and successful Firhouse Bohernabreena candidate Alan Edge.

“I’m very proud to be the third LGBTQ+ mayor of south Dublin. My term is coming to an end in a couple of weeks and I think it’s really important that we wear are colours and we’re proud.

“I think that’s a great asset we have in South Dublin and it was very much a part of my campaign; it’s been focused on celebrating diversity.”

In Clondalkin, another sitting independent candidate Francis Timmons was the first to be elected on the first count.

“As a member of the LGBTQ+ community, I pride myself in being a voice for everyone,” said Councillor Timmons.

“I’m not here as just a gay councillor of Dublin, but as a representative of everyone in South Dublin City Council who needs someone to trust.

“I’m delighted that the people topping the tallies are not people that will be divisive or will bring hatred into our community.

“At this moment, I also definitely send my solidarity to the trans community that are being targeted relentlessly.

“I have a lot of trans friends myself and I stand totally with them at this time and always.”

The councillor highlighted that the far right has made its way in, adding that this should act as a wake-up call for the government and its policies on issues such as the housing crisis.

“I knocked across many doors and the message was clear; we have two major issues which are housing and anti-social behaviour,” he said.

“We now need to look at why the far right have made gains and what we have done wrong to let that happen.

“We need to ensure that going forward, we have housing for all, not just for some.

“The long waiting lists for the people of South Dublin and everywhere else is just not acceptable.”

Sad Passing

The mother-in-law of a Fine Gael candidate was killed by a cyclist while helping to erect election posters for the party.

Theresa Clarke (70) was crossing the Ranelagh Road in South Dublin, when a cyclist struck her in  the middle of the road at 11pm last Tuesday, June 4.

She was the mother in law of Fine Gael candidate John Clendennen, who was elected to Offaly County Council.

The mother of three, and former teacher and principal of Scoil Aonghusa in Balrothery, Tallaght, died in hospital on Sunday, June 9.

“We’re staying united and trying to deal with the grief of losing someone that was so close and such a tower of strength to her three daughters and extended family,” said Councillor Clendennen.

“She was very proud of her career as a teacher and principal. Her main joys outside of her family was her involvement with Fine Gael as a party and her contribution to it.

“It’s the call no family wants to receive. Whatever she was doing in the area is irrelevant in a sense.

“She was crossing the road and that shouldn’t happen in this day and age.”

Dail Run?

Sinead Gibney of the Social Democrats has revealed  she is going to be running for a Dáil seat after failing in her quest for Europe.

“I will be looking forward to a Dáil run and talking to all the relevant people about what that might look like, where I might run and start preparing for that.”

Focus on north Dublin

It’s been an election that both underlined and defined trends with shock

losses for Sinn Fein and The Green Party as Labour and Aontú made  gains

It’s been a strange local election with the two big Government parties holding their own, The Greens and Sinn Féin having lost a seat in Fingal (albeit SF retain four in total), with the Independents, Aontú and Labour making gains.

Nowhere has Sinn Féin’s policy been evidentially flawed than in Fingal’s county capital, Swords. The seven-seater concluded on Monday morning with a nail-biting finish with the two SF candidates, Marian Buckly and sitting councillor Ann Graves, Darren Kelly (Ind) and James Humphries (Lab) and Brigid Manton (FF) fighting it out for the remaining three seats.

Despite Manton calling for a full recount, being only three votes behind Graves, she was eliminated before SF’s Graves was then eliminated leaving Swords LEA now served by Dean Mulligan, (14C) Darragh Butler (FF), Luke Corkery (FG and the youngest candidate to stand for FG in Dublin), Joe Newman (Ind), Darren Kelly (Ind), James Humphries (Lab) and Marian Buckley (SF). Cllr Ian Carey was another shock loss for the Greens in Swords.

The Rusk-Lusk LEA drew perhaps the most turbulent results in the local elections. The loss of two sitting FF councillors, Mayor of Fingal Adrian Henchy and Brian Dennehy was not predicted and went against the national trend. For Labour, it was a resounding success with Cllr Rob O’ Donoghue having an amazing campaign and pulling over 3,000 first preferences and his running mate Corinna Johnston pulling almost 1,700!

Serving councillors Cathal Boland (Ind) Paul Mulville (SD) and Eoghan Dockrell (FG) were returned but it’s Labour now which is the dominant party on this body, with Ms Johnston being the first woman ever to be elected to Fingal from Donabate.

And Independents in general did well in Fingal with Tony Murphy topping the poll in Balbriggan and Tania Doyle romping home in Ongar, and Mulligan in Swords, all returned on the first count.

Balbriggan is now served by Murphy (Ind), Grainne Maguire (Ind), Brendan Ryan (Lab), Tom O’Leary (FG) and Malachy Quinn of SF bucking the national trend and taking a seat on the tenth round, with Cllr Karen Power (GP) losing out.

Following a horrendous assault on Cllr Doyle and her husband in Ongar, Cllr Doyle topped the poll in Ongar and was followed by SF’s Angela Donnelly and on the 11th count, Kieran Dennison (FG), Tom Kitt (FF) and new to the council, Gerard Sheehan on Aontú with Michelle Griffin (Greens) losing her seat.

Aontú will be well pleased to have two new faces on Fingal County Council this week, with Ellen Troy running an amazing campaign in Castleknock LEA with the shock loss of a seat for FF’s Howard Mahony. FG’s Ted Leddy topped the poll with well over 2,000 votes followed by a really solid performance by Labour’s John Walsh, Sinead Shovlin (FG), Ellen Troy (Aon), Ruth Coppinger (PBPS) and Eimear Carbone-Mangan picking up the last seat for FF.

In Howth Malahide, Joan Hopkins (SD) had a sterling campaign with 3, 272 votes but this constituency threw up another anomaly. FG’s Aoibhinn Tormey, FF’s Cathal Haughey and Eoghan O’Brien and Lab’s Brian McDonagh all polled over 2,000 votes each on the first count with Cllrs Jimmy Guerin (Ind) and David Healy of The Greens taking the final two seats. However, Cllr Anthony Lavin (FG) lost his seat.

The Blanchardstown Mulhuddert LEA was one of the long most drawn out counts with Mary McCamley (Lab) topping the poll with only 685 votes! Breda Hanaphy (SF) was first elected, following by McCamley, then by JK Onwumereh (FF), Patrick Quinlan (NP) and John Burtchell (PBPs) with Cllr Steve O’Reilly (FG) losing out.

Mary Lou McDonald, leader of Sinn Féin  said, “ my party must now reflect on this election. We had sterling candidates who worked hard on the ground.” She conceded that perhaps running multiple candidates in some electoral areas has not worked.

Cllr Natalie Treacy was a strong SF figure on Castleknock LEA but instead, the party decided to run Ms Treacy in a Dublin City Council borough where she was barely known.

Deputy Ivana Bacik, leader of the Labour Party told the Dublin Gazette: “We in Labour are delighted with the support we  received at local level reflects the fantastic commitment our Labour reps have to their communities.”

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