Could it be Senator O’Connell and Senator Kelleher ?

Cllr. Niall Kelleher (left) and Cllr. Bobby O'Connell will be striving to change their titles and take up seats in Seanad Éireann. Photographs: John Reidy
Cllr. Niall Kelleher (left) and Cllr. Bobby O’Connell will be striving to change their titles and take up seats in Seanad Éireann. Photographs: John Reidy

Recent retirements from the benches of Seanad Éireann have necessitated by-elections to a couple of the panels which make up the upper house.

According to a report by Philip Ryan in yesterday’s Irish Independent, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar is backing former Ulster Farmers’ Union president Ian Marshall for one of two seats on the Seanad’s agriculture panel.

Resistance from Cllr. Bobby

However, the Taoiseach will face resistance in his by-election aims from Kerry councillor and two time Mayor Bobby O’Connell, FG.

“Mr Marshall was recently introduced to the Fine Gael parliamentary party and Mr Varadkar is understood to hope his election to the Seanad would be seen as an olive branch to Ulster unionists,” according to Philip Ryan’s report.

Hat in the Ring

Mr. Ryan’s report also points out that current Mayor of the Killarney Municipal District, Niall Kelleher has thrown his hat into the ring for a separate seat on the agriculture panel.

Along with Cllr. Kelleher the seat is also being contested by Niall Blaney and Martin Miley, from Kildare.

Interesting Times

“Former Fine Gael Kildare North TD Anthony Lawlor is also contesting the seat, as is Independent Alliance Waterford County Councillor Joe Conway,” according to the report.

Interesting, political times ahead.


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