Friday 21 July 2017

True colours shine through when politics can touch real lives

President Michael D. Higgins with former Presidents Mary Robinson and Mary McAleese outside Áras An Uachtaráin on the 75th anniversary of the Presidency in Ireland in 2013
President Michael D. Higgins with former Presidents Mary Robinson and Mary McAleese outside Áras An Uachtaráin on the 75th anniversary of the Presidency in Ireland in 2013
Liz O'Donnell

Liz O'Donnell

When, as expected, a breathless Taoiseach announced to the Dáil that he was off to the Park on Wednesday morning, he still caught people off guard. Away he sped without a look back, leaving deputies with stuff unsaid and legislation unfinished. The 31st Dáil had run its course.

The only mercy for the Deputies scattering back to their constituencies is that it will be a short, snappy campaign - the shortest ever. Most have been electioneering for months. But it only gets real for both voter and candidate when the Dáil is dissolved and the posters go up.

Over the next three weeks, they will get a clearer insight into what people really think by knocking on doors or standing at train stations or church gates. The time will fly. Kilos will be shed from long hours of walking, skipped meals and adrenalin. I called it the 10lb election diet. Operation Transformation before its time.

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