FF Won't Back Presidential Candidates

Fianna Fail (FF) has decided that they will not back independent candidates in the presidential election.

It follows a row in Fianna Fáil over the party's presidential election strategy.

Party Leader Micheal Martin put forward the motion, which was seconded by his Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív.

The news will come as a bitter blow to prospective candidates including David Norris and Dana Rosemary Scallon, who were hoping that individual Fianna Fail TDs would nominate them.

Meanwhile Senator Labhrás Ó Murchú withdrew his name from the potential candidate list.

In a statement, Senator Ó Murchú said that he would not continue to seek nominations from individual Fianna Fáil members.

"In the absence of such nominations, I could not achieve the 20 nominations required," he said.

The Background

Election strategy has been an ongoing debate for the party in the last few weeks. Yesterday Mr Martin met with Mr Ó Cuív in Dublin to discuss the party’s stance on supporting an independent candidate or candidates.

Senator Labhrás Ó Murchú’s bid to get a presidential nomination prompted a bitter and inconclusive debate within the party.

At a six-hour party meeting,on Thursday last, Mr Ó Cuív threatened to resign as deputy leader if Mr Martin went ahead with a motion that would have prevented Fianna Fáil TDs and Senators from nominating any presidential candidate.

But Mr Ó Cuív later denied suggestions that he was directly challenging the party leader.

For more information on Ireland's presidential election see:

FF Leader And Deputy 'Talk Presidency'
and Dana Seeks Support For Aras Election


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