JUNIOR Finance Minister Brian Hayes has rejected suggestions that his decision to run for Europe is as a result of his involvement in the infamous heave against Fine Gael leader Enda Kenny.
He will defend the seat that has been held by outgoing MEP Gay Mitchell for ten years.
Speaking to the media at Leinster House, Minister Hayes said he intends to serve the full five year term, if elected.
"It's my intention to serve the full five years, I don't see a scenario where I would stand at the next election but who knows," he said.
Mr Hayes said he spoke directly to Enda Kenny about his decision and insists he has the full backing of the Taoiseach.
"I've spoken to the Taoiseach. He fully agrees with my decision. It is my decision," he added.
Pressed on whether he regrets his role in the 2010 heave against Mr Kenny, the Dublin South West TD said he has learned from the experience.
"What I've always tried to do is to learn from that experience. Whether it was a mistake or not, it is an experience we've had to live with."
He added:"Enda Kenny has been absolutely fair, upfront and honest with me in all of this and I appreciate that.
I appreciate his support. He's been very good to me in difficult times. And he brought this party together, we're stronger as a result of it."
Mr Hayes is widely expected to top the poll in the elections, which are scheduled to take place on May 23.
Fianna Fáil has selected Dublin City Councillor Mary Fitzpatrick, while Labour will field sitting MEP Emer Costello.
Ireland East MEP Nessa Childers has decided to run in Dublin, while Socialist MEP Paul Murphy will also attempt to defend his seat.