Tuesday 21 November 2017

Floating Voter Day 5: Only the best for Joan as she drops in on senator’s mammy

Joan Burton enjoys a cup of tea with Anne Whelan. Photo: Tony Gavin
Joan Burton enjoys a cup of tea with Anne Whelan. Photo: Tony Gavin
Alan Shatter
Timmy Dooley

Compiled by Cormac McQuinn

Trust Irish mammies to bring out the best china when there's a VIP guest.

Tánaiste Joan Burton dropped into Senator John Whelan's mum Anne Whelan's house for, as he put it, "tea and the proverbial hang sandwich".

They had been busy out campaigning in Monasterevin and Mrs Whelan (inset with the Tánaiste) put on a good spread including cupcakes for the hungry canvassers.

However, use of the fine china for the occasion did not go unnoticed.

"There was just a bit of slagging between my mother and her best friend Marie," said Laois candidate John.

"Marie said, 'I've been coming in and out of here for years and I've never seen those cups and saucers'."

It was also a mystery to the senator where they came from. "Normally it's mugs. It's like the best delph that you keep for the parish priest or something in the parlour.

"I hadn't seen them before either," he added.

As for Mrs Whelan's verdict on Joan? "She said she's fierce ordinary and down to earth - no airs and graces," John said.

They said what...!?

"I am but a humble servant of the people" - Taoiseach Enda Kenny when asked if he agrees with Alan Kelly that "power is a drug".


Timmy Dooley's campaign was "stuck in the muck" when Co Clare's back roads to Feakle proved too much for his election-mobile.

"Canvass came to a shuddering halt today," the Fianna Fáil candidate (right) posted online. It took "a local farmer and a tow rope" to get things moving.

"It's just one of those things," he said.

Floating Voter can sympathise, having only found out what a boreen was on a visit to the Banner County.


Readers will remember Oscar, Labour candidate Kevin Humphreys' precocious pup. Last week he led his owner on a merry chase around the garden when he made off with those all-important cable ties for posters.

Oscar has been a hit on the campaign trail in Dublin Bay South - so much so that he was all tuckered out last night, napping with the junior minister on the sofa. "First weekend over post canvass," Mr Humphreys tweeted with a picture of them snoozing.

Desperate vol-au-vents appeal

The public don't see the fare the parties put on for hungry hacks.

Fine Gael has coffee and pastries every morning, Fianna Fáil offers tea and biscuits, while Sinn Féin serves up coffee.

But Renua Ireland members have resorted to asking reporters to bring them treats, with deputy leader Billy Timmins saying Renua hasn't got the money to keep reporters fed.

Leader Lucinda Creighton quipped: "Maybe the media will take pity on us and bring some vol-au-vents and éclairs for us."

The Tweeting Voter

"Cyberspace... fiscal space... making the case, for voters embrace"

- Alan Shatter @AlanShatter TD gets poetic

Irish Independent

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