Kerry County Council gives Peter Casey the first nomination for the presidency

By Anne Lucey in Tralee

Kerry County Council has voted to nominate Peter Casey, the businessman and RTE Dragons & Den Star, as candidate for the election as president.

After the meeting, Mr Casey said he was confident that he would be given three other councils to allow him to move forward. He also said that he could not run to lose and was willing to spend up to the € 750,000 limit.

About 14 people had contacted the council to request an appointment for the presidency, the mayor of Kerry Norma Foley who was sketched at the beginning of the procedure, who saw the council decide to make an appointment in the first place. to do.

Three nominees were presented and seconded. Gemma O & # 39; Doherty was proposed and seconded by Sinn Féin; William Delaney was proposed by Cllr Brendan Cronin, an independent council member and jointly seconded by Robert Beasley and Michael Gleeson (Ind) of Sinn Féin.

Peter Casey was presented by Fianna Fáil council member Michael Cahill and seconded by Independent Cllr Johnny Healy-Rae.

Mr. Cahill said that Peter Casey had already invested in business in Co. Kerry and that his program for attracting children of Irish emigrants to spend time in the Gaeltacht would be of benefit.

He had important business contacts in the US and Australia and could be "a great ambassador."

These feelings were repeated by Cllr J. Healy-Rae.

Mr. Casey received strong support from Fianna Fáil. Nine out of 10 Fianna Fáil councilors from the 33-member Kerry County Council, including the mayor, voted for Mr. Casey.

Casey also received the support of independent councilors Johnny and Maura Healy-Rae, Sam Locke and Dan McCarthy and Fine Gael's Pat McCarthy.

The eight other Fine Gael council members abstained.

The move by Sinn Féin to introduce Cllr O & # 39; Doherty caused surprises in some circles.

Suggesting Ms. O & # 39; Doherty, Senn Féin & # 39; s Cllr Pat Daly said he wanted to make clear that he would vote for and recruit for candidate party Liadh Ní Riada.

He believed in giving a voice to candidates.

Four people had advised the council two weeks ago, and this included Gemma O Doherty, a woman "who came without a PR company," said Cllr Daly.

She was a woman who was fearless and brave in emphasizing injustice in her 20 years as a journalist, Cllr Daly said.

"There has been a pretty frightening whisper campaign against her," said Cllr Daly, a lawyer.

It reminded him of the whisper campaign of some gardaí against the garda whistleblowers, he said.

Peter Casey was someone he could not support given his support to NATO, Israel and his criticism of Michael D Higgins' visit to Cuba, "saying that he would warmly welcome Donald Trump," Cllr Daly said.

Cllr Toireasa Ferris of Sinn Féin posted the nomination of Mrs O & # 39; Doherty, to which she also said she would vote and stand as a candidate for Liadh Ni Riada, the candidate of her party. "What I'm doing here today is to give the electorate the widest possible opportunity," said Ferris.

Fourteen councils voted for Mr. Casey, three for Gemma O & # 39; Doherty (three of the five council members), while William Delaney received four votes. Eleven council members abstained and one was absent.

After the meeting with the reporters, Mr Casey said he was "absolutely satisfied".

After Donegal, Kerry was very dear to him and his young people left and did not return.

"I was not losing, I think I have a very good platform," Casey said.

There was not a single person who did not have a son or daughter or family member who had to emigrate from rural Ireland, he said.

He said he believes in small businesses and that rural Ireland does not get the infrastructure it needs to support young people who come home to go to work.

He also wanted a five-year term and a change in the screening for candidates – where each presidential candidate needed the consent of 50 council members before he could address a meeting.

When asked why so many dragons walked, Mr. Casey said: "It is absolutely bizarre."

Gavin Duffy was & # 39; a big surprise, "he said.

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