FIANNA Fail Councillor Kate Feeney has thrown her hat in the ring to seek the party’s nomination to run for the Dáil in Dún Laoghaire.
Her decision to go forward means the first-time councillor will resume her rivalry with former minister Mary Hanafin.
In a repeat of the ‘Battle of Blackrock’, Ms Feeney said today that she would be contesting the Fianna Fáil selection convention, expected to take place before the end of next month.
Speaking to the Irish Independent, Ms Feeney said: "Competition within party is good, it makes us all work harder, so I am not worried about the previous election."
She said: "The General Election in 2016 will not be an easy one for Fianna Fáil, but with the right candidate I believe Fianna Fáil can regain a seat in Dún Laoghaire. I feel I have the capability to be that candidate because of the energy and vibrancy I will bring to the campaign.”
Amid a botched nomination process, Ms Feeney and Ms Hanafin fought a bitter battle for council seats in last year’s local elections.
Both were elected to Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council for the Blackrock ward and will now both be seeking the Fianna Fáil nomination to run in the general election in the south Dublin constituency.
Dún Laoghaire-based councillor Cormac Devlin, who has the backing of party grandee Mary O’Rourke, is also set to contest.
Speaking to Independent.ie, Ms Hanafin said that Ms Feeney's entrance into the race would not deter her in her bid.
She said the party should and can only run one candidate given the number of seats in the constituency.
"There is a lot of interest in the nomination, and the best person should go forward. But there should be evidence to find out who that is and so a poll should be done to see who would have the best chance of taking a seat," she said.