Current Affairs Politics

FG Says No To Pat Cox – Along With The Rest Of Ireland

Some fairly good news today as Fine Gael plumps for Gay Mitchell as their favoured presidential candidate over arch-Europhile and Eurocrat par excellence Pat Cox. As reported in the Irish Times:

‘Gay Mitchell has this afternoon been chosen as Fine Gael’s candidate for the presidential election in October.

An estimated 500 Fine Gael delegates gathered at a North Dublin hotel to select the party’s candidate after hearing impassioned speeches made on behalf of the three presidential hopefuls – former European Parliament president Pat Cox and MEPs Mairead McGuinness and Mr Mitchell.

Two counts were held this afternoon with Pat Cox eliminated in the first one. While no exact figures were forthcoming it is believed Mr Mitchell won by 54 per cent of the vote compared to Ms McGuinness’ 46 per cent.’

Apparently the FG leadership finally woke up to the fact that a true-blue European Union collaborator integrationist was going to be the hardest of hard sells to an increasingly Eurosceptical Irish public. Given Fine Gael’s normally Big House attitudes (we know better than the common masses) this is a remarkable turn around, and Gay Mitchell does have far more of the Everyman touch about him – for a career politician. In a lengthy speech (where he quoted Rudyard Kipling, a British Nationalist and Unionist who loathed the Irish – this is Fine Gael after all) Cox was of the opinion that:

‘The “mental partition” in Ireland should be brought to an end and he was convinced that the whole of Ireland could hold together for mutual benefit.’

Hmmm… Don’t tell me that a Fine Gael politician has remembered that the official name of his party is, Fine Gael the United Ireland Party?


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