THE Presidential Election on Thursday, October 27, will see the largest field of runners in the history of the office. Seven candidates are now in the field for an election that is almost certain to go down to the fifth or sixth count before a winner is declared in Dublin.
Michael D Higgins (Labour), Gay Mitchell (Fine Gael) and Martin McGuinness (Sinn Fein) are the party representatives while the non-party candidates are Mary Davis, Sean Gallagher, Dana Rosemary Scallon and David Norris, the latter two who got on the ballot paper the day before the close of nominations.
The election is now under way in earnest and is proving to be a tough and uncompromising contest. The gloves are already off between Fine Gael and Sinn Fein and sections of the national media are ensuring that this will be one controversial campaign.
Mayo native Mary Davis is mounting a strong campaign and a recent Red Sea Poll put her right in the middle of the field and also, along with Michael D Higgins, the most transfer friendly candidate in the race. A table quiz in support of her campaign will be held in the Bosh Bar & Restaurant in Linenhall Street, Castlebar on Thursday night (October 6) at 9pm. All the details can be had from Michael at 087 2055907 or Mick on 087 2687453.
Teresa Ward (nee Higgins), Charlestown and Claremorris, said they were very encouraged by the response to the Mary Davis campaign here in Mayo. “It has been hugely positive and we are anticipating a great vote for her in her home county which we expect to win in style. John Caulfield from Breaffy is doing a superb job as coordinator for Mayo and we now have supporters active in every parish in the county. Mary will do us proud as she has always done in the past.”
The row between Fine Gael and Sinn Fein took centre stage over the weekend with Gay Mitchell and Phil Hogan hitting out at the credentials of Martin McGuinness of Sinn Fein. Certainly, the temperature was upped considerably in the spat between the two candidates.
Therese Ruane of Sinn Fein in Mayo said Mr Hogan was speaking “ráiméis” when he said the election of Martin McGuinness as President would impact negatively in the boardrooms in the United States. The Mayo votes will be counted in the Royal Theatre, Castlebar.