Clune heads FG list for Seanad

HIGH-PROFILE election casualties Cork South Central’s Deirdre Clune, Kerry South’s Tom Sheahan and Wexford’s Michael D’Arcy are among those nominated by Fine Gael for the upcoming Seanad election.

Former TD Deirdre Clune is being nominated for the Cultural and Educational Panel along with Offaly County Councillor Liam Quinn and Dublin City Councillor Dr Bill Tormey.

Cork County Councillor Pat Burton, who also narrowly missed out on a Dáil seat, has been nominated for the Agricultural Vocational Panel along with Councillor John Bailey, Michael Comiskey of the Sligo-Leitrim Constituency Executive, Galway County Councillor Peter Feeney and Louth County Councillor Colm Markey.

Senator Fidelma Healy- Eames, who also failed to get a seat for the party in Galway West, is being nominated by Fine Gael for the Labour Panel, along with South Dublin County Councillor Cáit Keane, Clare County Councillor Tony Mulcahy and Olivia Mitchell’s campaign manager, Cllr Neale Richmond.

Dublin Lord Mayor and general election candidate Gerry Breen, South Dublin County Councillor Colm Brophy, Westmeath Councillor Peter Burke Jnr and Galway County Council’s Tom Mc Hugh are also party nominees for the Industrial and Commercial Panel.

Michael D’Arcy, Fingal’s Kieran Dennison, Tipperary County Councillor Mary Hannah Hourigan and Kerry’s Tom Sheahan are being put forward for the Administrative Panel.

As Taoiseach, Enda Kenny will be able to nominate 11 members to the Seanad, while of the remaining 49 seats, 43 will be filled by way of an election, with members of the Dáil, the outgoing Seanad and members of city and county councils qualified to vote.

The remaining six seats are returned from two panels, with the graduates of the National University of Ireland returning three and the other three elected by graduates of Trinity College Dublin.

Despite Fine Gael and Labour’s well-publicised promises to abolish the Seanad, this can only happen following a referendum — and this cannot affect the next Seanad, which is due to be elected by the end of next month.

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