Mary Fitzpatrick elected FF candidate for European elections
Dublin city councillor Mary Fitzpatrick has been selected as Fianna Fáil's candidate for the European elections in Dublin.
Fitzpatrick, who leads the party's group on the council, was selected on the first count, taking 362 votes, and defeating the two other candidates, Tiernan Brady, the director of the Gay and Lesbian Equality Network (GLEN) who received 208 votes, and former Senator Geraldine Feeney who got 140 votes.
Over 700 people attended the selection convention in the Clyde Court Hotel in Dublin, and the result was greeted by loud cheers from the crowd.
Fianna Fáil party leader Micheal Martin afterwards described Mary Fitzpatrick as a candidate who has gained respect "cross the party political divide" and is a politician of "substance, commitment and energy". He said: With Mary as our candidate I believe we have a really strong chance of winning a seat in Dublin and electing someone who will be a first-rate MEP".
Ms Fitzpatrick described her selection as "one my my happiest days in the party" and pledged to leave "no stone unturned" in her campaign. "I will be a champion for Dublin," she said.
The Dublin councillor has fought election battles before - notably in her efforts to win a seat in Dublin Central, the constituency dominated by Bertie Ahern for many years. In 2007 she failed to get elected despite polling nearly twice as many first preference votes as fellow Fianna Fáil candidate Cyprian Brady.
However Ms Fitzpatrick wouldn't comment on her relationship with the former Taoiseach: "I can't remember the last time I saw him," she said