And so it continues… On Friday the 10th February 2017, The Irish Times carried an Opinion piece by an Oliver Callan headed: Meet the Irish Donald Trumps.
A Statement from Michael Healy Rae, TD
To start with, I find it hard to understand how somebody can write an ‘opinion’ about a person that they have never met, but Mr. Callan proceeds to do just that.
Leaving aside for a moment his comments about myself and my brother Danny, I take grave exception to his comments about our late father Jackie Healy-Rae R.I.P and his funeral to which thousands of people turned up to pay their last respects.
Representative for over 40 Years
Unfortunately my father is no longer around to stand up for his good record as a public representative for over 40 years. He proceeds to liken our reverence for our late father to Donald Trump’s ‘obsessive view’ of his late father Fred. Well if holding your father in high regard is a crime, sure go ahead and shoot me now Mr. Callan…
He states that I “inherited the Kerry South seat in 2011”. Well I am sorry Mr. Callan but politics does not work like that – there is no such thing as ‘inheriting’ a political seat. I put myself forward for the general election in 2011 in the same way as all of the other candidates and the good people of South Kerry saw fit to elect me as one of their representatives in Dáil Éireann.
Brexit and Immigrants
He talks about Brexit and immigrants but he fails to mention that I as Chair of the Joint Committee on European Affairs together with other Members of the Committee were in Brussels last week for talks on what Brexit will mean for Ireland. The delegation attended 14 meetings in 2 days and we met, amongst others, Mr. Michel Barnier, Chief Negotiator for the European Commission, Mr. Guy Verhofstadt, European Parliament Representative on Brexit, Commissioner Phil Hogan, European Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development, Ms. Emily O’Reilly, European Ombudsman and H.E. Declan Kelleher, Permanent Representative of Ireland to the European Union
30,369First Preference Votes
Under the heading ‘freeloaders’, he refers to expenses “clocked up” by us in March 2016 when the Dáil only sat for two days. What he fails to mention is that during this period we were in Dublin, morning, noon and night, playing our part in the negotiations on the formation of a new Government and the finalisation of the Programme for Government which arose out of those negotiations.
Mr. Callan states that “you cannot condemn those who elect the Healy-Raes”. Well I am sure that the 30,369 people in Kerry who gave us their first preference votes in Election 2016 will breathe a sigh of relief and will be delighted to hear that they are not going to be ‘condemned’ for exercising their democratic vote.
Welcome to the ‘Deep South’
He says “let’s be glad that this most nuclear of families” doesn’t have any launch codes. Rest assured Mr. Callan we don’t have any weapons of mass destruction or launch codes in Kerry – we don’t need them. You are more than welcome to visit the “Deep South” at any stage to check it out.
Like I said at the beginning I have never met Mr. Callan so I would not dare to venture or voice any “Opinion” on him. He is described as “an Irish vocal and performance satirist and impressionist” and as far as I know he is quite successful in his chosen field. I wish him every good luck in his future career. – Michael Healy-Rae T.D. 13 February 2017
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