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That leadership campaign… May 21, 2017

Posted by WorldbyStorm in Uncategorized.
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Yesterday, according to RTÉ, was the day nominations closed for the FG leadership? Really? And we’ve been treated to the ‘race’ from the moment that Kenny resigned. The whole process seems to have been in train for a very long time now (and in a way it has, hasn’t it?).

As to the outcome…

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1. Aengus Millen - May 21, 2017

The race is over (though the media refuses to say so because they want something to talk about) my calculations are that Varadkar could get as little as 24% of the rank and file vote and still win.

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WorldbyStorm - May 21, 2017

Wow. Fair dues to you for doing the math. Can Coveney prise away any who have committed to Varadkar? That has to be the only remaining question. If not – as you say – it’s all over.

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An Cathaoirleach - May 21, 2017

I am surprised that people are surprised by Dr. L’s campaign. He is one of the most ruthless campaigners I have ever witnessed. The fingerprints of a certain FG Godfather, Big Phil are also to be seen, providing assistance from Brussels & ensuring the delivery of key parts of the FG structures to him.

Varadkar has been doing the FG rubber chicken circuit for years, preparing himself for Enda’s departure.

50 members of the Parliamentary Party, the current estimated support of Dr. L gives him 44.52% of the college vote. 45 have declared for him, with just 8 who have not openly given their support to either candidate.

He has the support of the majority councillors in Dublin and even all four FG councillors in little Leitrim have swung behind him. Coveney never seemed to understand what was going on, assuming the central organisation would deliver for him as the establishment candidate.

Continuing with the public meetings/hustings, gives him a chance to talk to the members, but also the members will get a chance to challenge him. This contact may be crucial if there is an early GE.

I think the most telling story may be within FF. While there is no clear alternative to MM, the substantial age difference with Dr. L (19 years) will become noticeable very quickly.

One can only imagine that Gerry’s stylist is currently working on a new blend of hair dye, to ensure that his white locks, look more black than the current concoction he is using. 31 years of an age difference is a lot to make up in politics.

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WorldbyStorm - May 21, 2017

I think the surprise is that Coveney has seemed so underpowered in comparison to LV given that this contest was so long in the making.

I wonder though. The other way of looking at this is that LV is going to appear a bit callow in comparison to MM, whatever about GA (and I suspect his age isn’t an issue with GA’s voters, or SF supporters or would be SF voters).

I met LV about ten years ago, very briefly. He didn’t strike me as terribly congenial. Have to hope, for his sake, that has changed. It’ll need to.

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EWI - May 21, 2017

I met LV about ten years ago, very briefly. He didn’t strike me as terribly congenial. Have to hope, for his sake, that has changed. It’ll need to.

If the rest of the Dáil parties can’t give a good kicking to a party led by Mr. Nasty…

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fergal - May 21, 2017

Coveney never seemed to understand what was going on, assuming the central organisation would deliver for him as the establishment candidate- Does this meet Varadkar is anti-establishment……….when did that volte-face happen?

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2. roddy - May 21, 2017

Anti imperialist and national liberation leaders like Gerry are renowned for their longevity in the struggle.Their supporters don’t take advice from the blueshirts and their ilk.

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EWI - May 21, 2017

Liberation movements, by necessity and experience, are renowned for solidarity around and longevity of their leaders. Where that might lead, after the war is ‘over’, you can see with the likes of FF and the ANC.

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3. Tomboktu - May 22, 2017

Nobody has mentioned the ‘g’ word. LV came out as a gay man four months before the referendum was held, well after Gerry Buttimer and other FG activists had persuaded Kenny that gays marrying wasn’t a crazy idea. FThe Taoiseach slagged L|V because he — Kenny — had been in a gay bar before LV had been!

For some in FG, he’s their proof of open-mindedness, for others he’s the man who waited until it was safe while they took the risk with what was one of the dangerous issues of the day.

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4. irishelectionliterature - May 22, 2017

Met Varadkar at the FG Ard Fheis, was very pleasant and surprisingly unassuming compared to a lot of them. You can see how he’d be uncomfortable with some aspects of campaigning.
His Campaign has been well run, groundwork done a long time ago. Whilst corny the photoshoot on Leo Street was straight out of the Eoghan Murphy playbook.
Coveney on the other hand has a grey poster and even doing the launch at FG HQ is unimaginative. Yet again today the Indo has a load of stuff about his family life. On his FB feed from a rally in Cork, Coveney had a picture of the Coveney coat of arms, couldn’t believe it. Nothing says entitlement like I’m the real blue blood here.
Then yesterday morning we had Leo running in the 5k with Eoghan Murphy. That’s the generational change right there.

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5. sonofstan - May 22, 2017

Even if Coveney identified and mobilised a rural base among members and councillors it’s too late; they know that if they ‘stole’ the crown now, it would sink FG in the polls. So, if through grittd teeth, they will vote for Leo, while pretending to the merchant prince that they ‘right behind him’.

LV’s campaign has been tactically excellent and entirely empty – he mentioned Justin Trudeau and Macron in an interview last week and, while a bit of an overreach, given the respective size of us, Canada and France, it’s a smart move – both will impress a certain constituency a lot more than SC going on about Michael Collins.

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6. ivorthorne - May 22, 2017

Leo has been pushed as a future leader for years. Leo has been, largely, treated with kid gloves by many media figures and you do get the impression that some FG dons are working in the background on this.

Coveney is now getting support from other parts but it seems like he’s an “Anybody But Leo” candidate.

So who does Dinny want to win? Or does he care?

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irishelectionliterature - May 22, 2017

Well judging by some fawning Indo coverage over the last few days Dinny wants fellow Merchant Prince Coveney to win 🙂

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ivorthorne - May 22, 2017

Yes, but Big Phil is suspected of supporting Leo and I believed Big Phil and Dinny were pretty close . . .

I’m confused!

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