Wednesday 26 July 2017

Fine Gael spoilt for choice - but a spiteful contest will turn electorate off and leave the party divided

Social Protection Minister Leo Varadkar arriving at Leinster House for a Cabinet meeting yesterday Photo: Tom Burke
Social Protection Minister Leo Varadkar arriving at Leinster House for a Cabinet meeting yesterday Photo: Tom Burke
Shane Coleman

Shane Coleman

There are few more unedifying sights in politics than a leadership contest. First off, there's the excruciating stuff the candidates have (or feel they have) to do - 'coffee or a 5km run anyone? Oh and, by the way, you have met my family, haven't you?'

And then there's the desperate moves of those trying to ensure they're on the right team - with some of the most senior party figures, who really should be a little more dignified, among the worst offenders.

It is the political equivalent of the passengers on a distressed ship scrambling for the few remaining places on the lifeboat. Or, on a lighter note, young children playing musical chairs. Nobody wants to be left standing (or worse, sitting in the wrong chairs) when the music stops playing, so sharpen those elbows.

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