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Monday 20 November 2017

No-shows from Fine Gael ranks

Defeat is an orphan. Clearly the whole of the Fine Gael party was busy on Saturday.

Gay Mitchell wasn't the only party figure missing from Dublin Castle.

Only Enda Kenny and Charlie Flanagan, Mitchell's director of elections, were there to represent the party.

By the time the result of the referendum on Oireachtas powers was announced, the government parties didn't have a single representative present.

Labour was celebrating Michael D's win. What was Fine Gael's excuse?

Keeping things in perspective

After getting a drubbing from the electorate in the general election, the Green Party faith in democracy is restored.

Former Green TD and Senator Dan Boyle declared he was "reacquainted with the wisdom of the Irish people after the decision on the Oireachtas powers".

The Corkman had double reason to cheer on Saturday night: "Of course the more important victory tonight was Cork City beating Shelbourne."

Davis's son packs in last few jokes

Mary Davis's son Jonny retained his good humour after his mother's drubbing in the presidential election.

Five weeks ago, Davis was on 20pc and well in contention for the presidency.

But the Quango Queen's campaign collapsed and she wound up coming last.

On Friday evening as the results rolled in, marketing man Jonny observed: "Guess I can unpack my stuff. Probably won't be moving house now."

No one else could fill those shoes

Michael Twee is irreplaceable. The president-elect's first act upon being elected was to announce he would "cease to be a member and president of the Labour Party".

Whatever about Mary McAleese being a hard act to follow in Aras an Uachtarain, Michael D would be impossible to replace.

In fact, so impossible, the job has been scrapped.

The rules were changed some time ago so the position would be abolished as soon as Michael D resigned.

Floating voter awards: winners

Best Spindoctor:

Veteran spindoctor Tony Heffernan retired in March after decades working with the Workers Party, Democratic Left and Labour.

But Heffo wasn't taking a rest as he quickly got involved in Michael Twee's campaign.

Heffernan would have been aware of the Labour man's penchant for droning on.

Michael Twee was under strict instructions during the campaign to keep his responses short, to the point and then stop talking.

Heffernan also remained calm under pressure, where other candidates' spin machines were less so.

Best Gay Mitchell fight:

Where do you start? Is there a broadcaster or journalist left in the country who didn't have a run in with Mitchell?

But better than the Eamon Dunphy argument, or the Matt Cooper spat, was the assault on Pat Kenny on RTE's The Frontline debate.

Launching into Kenny, Mitchell asked what he had added to the debate about the role of the presidency.

Best conspiracy theory:

In a campaign where all the candidates were determined everybody was out to get them, Dana's assassination claim topped them all.

The tyre on her car blew out and she jumped to the conclusion somebody was trying to kill her.

Best campaign manager:

Joe Costello of Labour was the winner who took it all with Michael D as his candidate. Despite getting the poisoned chalice, Charlie Flanagan of Fine Gael remained upbeat throughout.

The ship was sinking but Charlie went down like a captain on the bridge.

Funniest candidate:

After weeks of behaving like a diva, David Norris eventually appeared relieved to be reaching the finishing line and displayed his tremendous off-the-cuff wit.

He leapt on board when Sean Gallagher hit his troubles, pointing out the use of the word "envelope" was rather unfortunate.

When Gallagher said people across the country were making up their mind on the referendum, Norris went in with the punchline that people were indeed making up their mind -- but not just on the presidency.

Irish Independent

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