Friday 24 January 2020

Former FG candidate Verona Murphy to run as Independent in forthcoming Election 2020

Verona Murphy voting in the by-election
Verona Murphy voting in the by-election
Hugh O'Connell

Hugh O'Connell

FORMER Fine Gael election candidate Verona Murphy is set to run as an Independent candidate in the forthcoming general election.

Ms Murphy has confirmed to Independent.ie that she will mount a fresh bid for the Dáil.

She is due to do a South East Radio interview later on Tuesday amid growing expectation that the election will be called by Taoiseach Leo Varadkar imminently.

Her entry into the race will cause a headache for Fine Gael in the south east constituency where its two incumbent TDs, Paul Kehoe and Michael D’Arcy, are battling for re-election.

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar and Verona Murphy. Photo: Douglas O’Connor
Taoiseach Leo Varadkar and Verona Murphy. Photo: Douglas O’Connor

Ms Murphy, who is the president of the Irish Road Haulage Association, was the Fine Gael candidate in the Wexford by-election last November, where she finished third.

She was also a general election candidate for the party but she was removed from the ticket in December following a controversial by-election campaign where she linked some migrants in Ireland with the terror group Isil in a series of interviews.

Ms Murphy apologised for those remarks but later said she stood over her raising of concerns about migrants, insisting it was a security issue.

"Do we have to wait to have a London Bridge incident on Wexford Bridge?” she told South East Radio in December.

Mr Varadkar said after that interview that he was glad she did not get elected to the Dáil for Fine Gael and said he regretted picking her to run for the party.

Quite a year: Taoiseach Leo Varadkar with former FG by-election candidate Verona Murphy
Quite a year: Taoiseach Leo Varadkar with former FG by-election candidate Verona Murphy

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