First transgender candidate decides against election run
Ireland's first ever transgender candidate will battle to get into frontline politics by fighting the local elections in 2019.
Sam Blanckensee has revealed that while he has decided not to run in the upcoming general election, he's gearing up for a place in public life by becoming a local councillor.
The 21-year-old veterinary nursing student from Greystones, Co Wicklow, began the transformation from female to male three years ago.
And while he thinks there is a lack of political representation for transgender people, he doesn't believe the time is right to fight the general election.
"I'm focusing on 2019, and I'll be supporting Labour TD Anne Ferris in her campaign," he told the Irish Independent.
"I'm not in a position to run at the moment; I need to finish my degree first.
"I'm looking to get more knowledge and experience first."