Dynamic shift in political make-up

By Maurice Garvey

DUBLIN Mid West always tends to deliver a bit of variety, and Saturday was no different, reports Maurice Garvey.

The election of Sinn Féin candidate Mark Ward means North Clondalkin can now claim two of the four Dáil seats in the constituency, after People Before Profit’s Gino Kenny was the first Neilstown native to be elected to the Irish Parliament in 2016.

Emer Higgins and Eoghan Murphy compressor

Cllr Emer Higgins with Minister For Housing Eoghan Murphy at the count centre in Adamstown

 ‘Shinners’ now hold two of the four seats in the constituency. That is at least until the General Election next year. The party recognise there are not enough votes in the constituency for two seats, and will not risk Ward and Eoin Ó Broin splitting support.

Since the establishment of Dublin Mid West in 2002, from the old Dublin South West, the seats have been filled by an interesting variety of parties.

 It was a stronghold for another former Tánaiste, Mary Harney (elected for the PDs here in 2002 and 2007), and in 2011 it seated two each from Labour (Joanna Tuffy and Robert Dowds) and Fine Gael (Frances Fitzgerald and Derek Keating).

Former Green TD Paul Gogarty was elected in 2007 and 2011, and despite not winning the by-election seat over the weekend, the Independent councillor will fancy his chances in 2020.

At the Adamstown Community Centre on Saturday, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said the party candidate Emer Higgins would have been elected if it were a General Election.

In 2020, she will have to battle it out with the incumbents Ó Broin, Kenny and Fianna Fáil TD John Curran for a seat, notwithstanding several by-election candidates happy with their performance.

The election of Ward and Kenny indicates a dynamic shift in the political makeup for Dublin Mid West, and it will be interesting to see what happens in 2020.

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