Taxi drivers withdraw support for Labour
Dublin taxi drivers who campaigned for Labour in the last general election are expected to withdraw their support for the embattled party.
The party is widely expected to suffer losses from the gains of the 2011 General Election.
Drivers affiliated with the Tiomanai Tacsai na hEireann (TTnH), which represents up to 1,500 full-time drivers, were encouraged to vote for both Labour and Sinn Fein in the 2011 election.
The group lobbied their drivers, and families of those with a relative who was a taxi driver, to give preference to Labour based on their policy document outlining measures they would take to improve the industry.
The group also included Sinn Fein in their information drive and asked people to give preference to candidates from both parties, sending out 20,000 text messages and delivering 10,000 leaflets.
However, David McGuinness, chairperson of the TTnH, said that the Labour Party have failed to deliver on any of their pre-election promises.
"It would have been significant in raising support for them, especially in Dublin. They also delivered copies of the document in areas where taxi drivers were living. I got one pushed through my door," he said.
"The overwhelming feeling is that Labour let us down the last time and we wouldn't be encouraging drivers to vote for them again."
It is expected that a vote will be taken tonight to decide who they should lend their support to.
A number of issues will be high on the list of issues for taxi drivers, Mr McGuinness said.
These include a lack of an independent appeals process for people who have their licence requests turned down, high insurance premiums, the removal of city centre taxi stands and proposals to ban taxis from College Green.