62pc of business leaders want Sean Gallagher as President
SEAN Gallagher has raced to the top in a poll of business leaders with 62pc supporting the Dragon’s Den star for the role of president.
Independent candidate David Norris got no support while the poll puts Labour candidate Michael D Higgins in the number two spot with 13pc followed by Sinn Fein’s Martin McGuinness at 9pc.
Mary Davis is next with 8pc support while Fine Gael’s Gay Mitchell has 6pc – a startlingly bad show for the country’s biggest political party.
Dana Rosemary Scallon is at 2pc in a poll of 200 business leaders taken today at the launch of National Employment Week 2012.
The most recent poll prior to this had Mr Higgins on 23pc and Mr Gallagher on 20pc – slightly different from an Irish Times Ipsos/MRBI poll, but within the 3pc margin of error.
The Paddy Power/Red C poll had Sinn Fein’s Mr McGuinness on 16pc while Mr Norris fell back to 14pc of the vote, a drop of 7pc, having led an earlier poll with 21pc share.
The issue of clemency letters for Mr Norris’s former lover has dominated his campaign and while the pollsters claim he is still liked by the public, and the most popular candidate for a dinner invite, his suitability for the presidency is in doubt.
Mr Mitchell followed with 10pc, a fall of 3pc.
Independent Ms Davis also saw her vote decline by 3pc, leaving her in sixth place on 9pc, and Dana was last with 5pc.
The seven presidential candidates take part in a debate on RTE’s Prime Time tonight which will be chaired by Miriam O’Callaghan.
Candidates latest promises below:
"As President, I would want to do for enterprise and job creation what President Mary Mc Aleese did for the peace process because local employment is what holds our communities together."
Michael D Higgins
"As President, I would seek to promote creative communities and creative industries. Combining the best of tradition with the spark of innovation, creativity can open up employment in areas from games development to film to artisan foods.
Dana Rosemary Scanlon
"The President can set the tome and confidence of the nation and reflect the desires of the people. Of course job creation is down to entrepreneurs, business, the creativity of individuals and initiatives by Government: However, a proactive Presidency will do much to enanse this environment."
"As President, I would continue my track record in job creation, both through private business initiatives and through amending legislation, which has been key in supporting the Government in attracting enterprise and investment."
"I want to put my effort into helping to rebuild Ireland's image abroad, and inspiring self-confidence at home, influencing how we create jobs over the next seven years."
"As President, I would work closely with IDA Ireland to promote the country, use the Áras to host meetings with potential investors, and lead trade missions abroad, with government approval."
"A proven track record in job creation - a President who'll sell the Irish brand abroad, bring foreign investment home and help build Irish grown companies."