Any politician hoping to be re-elected must somehow stand out from the crowd if even briefly.
That truth is recognised by that old saw: There’s no such thing as bad publicity.
It is natural though, for the candidate and those who might support them, that any vote-gathering bluster is generated by making good arguments, by advancing plausible, ambitious proposals.
Tragically, that is not always the case.
Limerick Labour councillor Conor Sheehan has suggested that motorists who park in cycle lanes be issued with penalty points. This is an entirely sensible proposal.
It is just one tiny change in the way we must change our attitude to commuting so city living might be made more tolerable and safer.
Though there are no cycle lanes in Kerry’s Kilgarvan — yet — local Independent TD Michael Healy-Rae could not resist the opportunity to deride the idea saying such measures should not be introduced.
He may have been speaking to a specific constituency but he revealed a mindset almost impossible to describe without breaching the standards good manners decree.