Sunday 21 January 2018

Perry backed strategy for two candidates prior to his convention defeat

John Perry
John Perry

Niall O'Connor and Daniel McConnell

Former junior minister John Perry told senior Fine Gael strategists that the party should pursue a two-candidate strategy in the Sligo/Leitrim constituency, sources have revealed.

Prior to his defeat at last weekend's convention, Mr Perry agreed at a meeting of officials that two candidates was the correct approach.

"John was adamant that a two-candidate strategy was the only option. His difficulty now is, he didn't expect to be defeated at convention," a party strategist told the Irish Independent.

Sources say that the Fine Gael National Executive is in "no way" inclined to add him to the ticket alongside sitting TD Tony McLoughlin and former TD Gerry Reynolds.

However, Mr Perry last night repeated his call for Taoiseach Enda Kenny to "honour his word" that all outgoing TDs would be given the chance to defend their seats.

"I am gentle until I am vexed, but fierce once provoked," he said.

Speaking in Madrid Mr Kenny said that he has already had a lengthy conversation with Mr Perry and pointed out that the final decision would not be his to make.

"I'm not going to go into detail of my discussion with John Perry here," Mr Kenny said.

Mr Reynolds said that while he favours a two-candidate strategy if a decision was made to change it he would "accept that as well".

Irish Independent

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