herald

Sunday 22 July 2018

Ex-ministers hope for a quick return to Dail

COMEBACK: Ousted Fianna Fail and Green TDs admit they're already eyeing next polls

SOME people just can't take no for an answer.

Several ex-ministers are already planning their their Dail comebacks, the Herald can reveal.

Despite the election carnage suffered by several former Fianna Fail and Green Party ministers, a number of them are refusing to bow out of politics completely.

Former Cabinet ministers Barry Andrews and Eamon Ryan both indicated that they may try and win back the support of their constituents.

And former junior Ministers Sean Connick and Ciaran Cuffe also refused to rule out a quick return to the Dail.

Former Children's Minister Barry Andrews told the Herald that he would not "rule out" a return to politics in the near future.

"I definitely won't rule it out. I miss the Dail in a big way. I'm still very much a member of the party. However Fianna Fail needs a huge amount of rebuilding work and that's a tall order in itself," he said.

"I'm still very much involved in the party, I attend the meetings. I certainly may look to run again," he added.

And newly elected Green Party leader Eamon Ryan told the Herald that he is still very much involved in politics.

"There is still room out there for the Green Party. My main aim is to build back up and that is my priority.

"We need different politics and a critical analysis of what's going on and my main priority is bringing that about."

Others, however, such as former Minister for Community, Equality and Gaelteacht Affairs Pat Carey, and former Defence Minister Tony Killeen, told the Herald that they will not be making a return to the Dail.

However, some former Cabinet members and junior ministers were somewhat less forthcoming.

Former Environment Minister John Gormley refused to answer any questions when contacted by the Herald.

"I'm a private citizen now. Therefore I don't have to tell you anything," he said.

And former Tanaiste Mary Coughlan told the Herald that she too would not comment on her political future.

"I've said it many times over the past while -- I have no comment to make whatsoever on the matter."

And speculation still surrounds the futures of former political heavyweights Mary Hanafin and Mary Harney.

Ms Hanafin, who is still vice chairperson of Fianna Fail, has been linked to a run for the Aras, as well as being tipped as a potential party candidate in the upcoming Dublin West by election.

Ms Harney, along with some of her former Cabinet members such as Dick Roche, Martin Mansergh and Batt O'Keeffe, could not be contacted by the Herald.

hnews@herald.ie

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