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Sunday 4 December 2016

Exhaustion caused bad interview, says Flanagan

Politics

Terence Flanagan and Miriam O'Callaghan
Terence Flanagan and Miriam O'Callaghan

Renua TD Terence Flanagan has broken his silence on his "car crash" radio interview last month, saying it was because he was "exhausted".

Mr Flanagan denied the incident was a panic attack as had been suggested at the time. "It was one interview too many for me, I was exhausted," he said.

He also rejected suggestions that he is likely to lose his seat at the next election despite a boundary redraw of the new Dublin Bay North constituency.

Mr Flanagan said he knew instantly that the interview was "bad, very bad" but he said it was one of those things.

Speaking to Miriam O'Callaghan on RTE Radio One, Mr Flanagan said the six-month run up to the Renua launch earlier in the day had "taken its toll" on him and that he was "very exhausted".

"It was an early start, a 6am start. I did a few interviews in the morning and they went very well.

"We celebrated at lunch but by the late afternoon the adrenalin was fading," he said.

"It was just a human situation, I had put myself under huge pressure which wasn't sustainable," he said.

Mr Flanagan also paid tribute to DriveTime anchor Mary Wilson (right) for the compassion and humanity she showed to him during the RTE interview.

"The questions she asked were very fair and she was very humane in her approach," he added.

"I was searching for the words, and they weren't there. Sometimes the body gives up when you are pushing it too hard. All of that took its toll on me," he said.

Mr Flanagan said it was very difficult that evening watching his party leader Lucinda Creighton on the Late Late Show as he felt he had let her and other party colleagues down.

"It was terrible moment. I felt I let down my colleagues, my family and myself. It was a tough few days," he said.

"When you have a great family, a great girlfriend, I did question myself, but I will continue to work very hard for my constituents," he said.

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