FG candidate alleges party colleague wants her 'knocked out' in poster war
Published 05/02/2016 | 02:30
A full blown row has erupted among Fine Gael's candidates in Dublin Bay North over the erection of posters.
First-time candidate Stephanie Regan alleged that her colleague Naoise Ó Muirí is trying to knock her out.
Ms Regan, a psychotherapist who ran in the local elections in 2014, believes that somebody within her party organised for her posters to be excluded from a batch put up in the Howth and Sutton areas.
"I thought 'you can be paranoid about these things'. But if you are putting up Fine Gael posters it should be for the full team.
"I've brought it to the attention of the constituency. It's a strategy and it's clearly not Richard's strategy," she said.
Mr Ó Muirí denied that he has made any effort to disadvantage Ms Regan, insisting that any postering in the area was arranged by constituency officials. He said that while his supporters have put some individual posters, the vast majority are being looked after at a constituency level.
A spokesman for Richard Bruton declined to comment.
Sources in the constituency said they had no reason to think there were dirty tricks at play.
Tensions among the Fine Gael candidates in Dublin Bay North have been high since their selection convention last May. A surprise convention win for Ms Regan pushed Mr Bruton off the ticket - but party headquarters decided to add the minister.
With two ministers and a series of well-known independents and senators the constituency is one of the most competitive in the country.
Ms Regan said despite being in a so-called 'group of death' she believes people are noticing her work. She accused Mr Ó Muirí of trying to "get in on the coat tails of Richard".