May poll wanted as Nulty departs

by Gazette Reporter

Patrick Nulty says that resigning was the most appropriate action to take after making a “very serious error”.
Dublin West was left in shock at the weekend when Patrick Nulty stepped down as TD over inappropriate Facebook messages he sent to women, including a 17-year-old girl.
The revelations of his actions were revealed in a Sunday newspaper, the day after he informed his constituency of his resignation. It was reported that one of the messages asked: “Have you ever been spanked?” It was further alleged that a woman was urged to wear a skirt to a constituency clinic.
Speaking to The Gazette, in what he said is to be his last interview on the issue, Nulty said he made a “serious error”.
“I did something that was totally wrong. I am very sorry about it. I was under the influence of alcohol when these messages were sent. It was totally inappropriate and wrong.
“I believe it was the right decision for me to resign and I apologise to my friends, family, constituents and supporters for my actions. I am very sorry that it happened. In particular I apologise to anyone who received a message they were uncomfortable with. It was totally wrong and unacceptable and that is why I resigned.”
Asked how many women received inappropriate messages, he said he didn’t recall sending the message and the one that appeared in the Sunday newspaper was sent “inadvertently” but “one message is one too many” and that is why he “had to resign”.
“My statement is very clear that my actions were inappropriate and totally wrong,” he said.
Talking to The Gazette and in his press statement he said he was under the influence of alcohol when he sent the message, which was reported to have been sent in the early hours of the morning from Leinster House.
Questioned about whether he had a drinking problem and if it is something he is seeking help for he said: “I was already receiving help, prior to this issue arising.
“I am a private citizen now and I resigned from the Dail and I think both myself and my family are entitled to privacy. As I said in my statement I sent messages that were inappropriate, wrong and unacceptable I am very sorry that that happened and I believe resigning was the correct course of action. I apologise for my actions, it was totally wrong and unacceptable.”
As to what he intends to do next, he said this is a matter for him and he did not wish to comment further.
Nulty won the 2011 Dublin West by-election that followed the death of Fianna Fail TD Brian Lenihan.
He won the seat as a member of the Labour Party but after voting against the 2012 budget he was expelled from the parliamentary party two months after being voted in. In June 2013 he officially resigned as a member of the Labour Party going it alone as an Independent TD.

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