Blaney And O'Flynn Bow Out Of Politics

Two more Fianna TDs have declared they will not be contesting their seats in the upcoming election.

Deputy for Donegal North East, Niall Blaney, was the latest to announce he would not run in the Election citing "personal reasons" for his decision.

Mr Blaney withdrew ahead of a Fianna Fáil selection convention for the constituency last night. He was first elected to the Dáil in 2002 for Independent Fianna Fáil but his organisation merged with Fianna Fáil in 2006.

Mr Blaney's decision is a setback for the party's leadership, and was an unexpected twist in the weeks running up the election. The now outgoing TD had failed to turn up at a Fianna Fáil selection convention for Donegal North East last night after earlier telling supporters he was not putting his name forward.

Meanwhile, Fianna Fáil TD for Cork North Central Noel O'Flynn also announced earlier today that he will not be contesting the General Election.

Responding to the announcement, Fianna Fáil Party Leader Micheál Martin has paid tribute to Mr O’Flynn, saying he had shown strength in putting the needs of the people and the party first in taking the "brave" decision.

“I understand how difficult a decision this must have been for Noel, his family, friends and supporters to make.

“Noel has been a great representative for the people of Cork North Central over the years. He has worked diligently to help his constituents and has strived night and day to make sure their interests are served. What can be done to help people in Cork has always been at the forefront of his mind and his political decision making.”

Mr Martin later admitted he had asked Deputy O'Flynn to stand down after going through the data for Cork North Central constituency and finding that it would not be possible to elect two Fianna Fáil TDs.

“Politics in Cork and nationally will be poorer without him, but I think it speaks volumes that he is still putting the people and the party ahead of his own interests. I wish Noel, his wife Frances and his three sons well on Noel’s retirement from political life,” Micheál Martin said.


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