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Tuesday 22 May 2018

Gogarty goes it alone in political comeback

Paul Gogarty
Paul Gogarty
Niall O'Connor

Niall O'Connor

A FORMER Green Party TD who lost his seat at the last general election has declared as an independent candidate in the upcoming local elections.

Paul Gogarty, who says his former party has "lost its way", is to contest the Lucan electoral ward in Dublin and faces the prospect of sharing a council chamber with Olympic medallist Kenneth Egan.

He is the latest former government figure to attempt a political comeback, three years after losing his seat as part of the Green Party's general election wipe-out.

Speaking to the Herald about his decision to return, Mr Gogarty said: "I do have name recognition and people know who I am but that shouldn't be used to presume you will get elected.

"Running as an independent is a double-edged sword. You have your independence and you are out on your own but you don't have the party backing.

"However, I don't believe the Green Party is going in the right direction. It lost its way a bit and I now believe I can get elected by showing people I can connect with them."

Mr Gogarty raised eyebrows by trying to launch a music career after he lost his seat in the Dublin Mid-West constituency.

He became notorious in 2009 after an extraordinary outburst in the Dail chamber in which he roared an expletive at Labour chief whip Emmet Stagg.

"F*** you Deputy Stagg, f*** you," he said.

Mr Gogarty added that he intends to launch his campaign at the end of April, but it will be a low-key affair.

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