Mitchell backs Crowley for Fianna Fail ticket
FINE GAEL presidential candidate Gay Mitchell believes MEP Brian Crowley should be Fianna Fail's choice for the Aras election.
The Fine Gael candidate was canvassing the crowds at the Rose of Tralee in Kerry yesterday as he tried to bolster his rural vote.
He insisted he's doing well outside his Dublin base and will pick up the Fine Gael vote nationwide.
But he is also hoping for support from Fianna Fail voters when their candidate -- if one is nominated -- is eliminated.
"This will be the first time, if Fianna Fail run a candidate, that the candidate is likely to be eliminated," he told the Irish Independent.
"I think if Fianna Fail don't run a candidate a lot of Fianna Fail people will vote for me and I'll get a lot of Fianna Fail transfers."
He said it was not up to him to advise Fianna Fail leader Micheal Martin on a candidate, before adding "hand on heart" the best candidate that the party could run would be "the man they know" -- Brian Crowley.
"I think whatever happens it will be difficult for Fianna Fail to win it on this occasion, so we will be looking for people who are Fianna Fail to lend us their support and I think there's a very good prospect that that would happen," he added.
Mr Mitchell also denied that his canvassing for clemency for death row prisoners was an election issue.
"I've written for everybody that I ever knew was condemned to death, everybody, no exception," he said.
"I'm a very inclusive person and I do not believe in excluding anybody in society and nobody is making any issue about that."