Tuesday 20 August 2019

Labour to spend more on Michael D campaign than on abortion referendum

President Higgins. Picture: Damien Eagers
President Higgins. Picture: Damien Eagers
Wayne O'Connor

Wayne O'Connor

The Labour party will spend more money trying to get President Michael D Higgins re-elected than it did on the recent abortion referendum campaign.

It spent €60,000 in the run up to last May’s referendum to repeal the Eighth Amendment but plans to spend a further €10,000 on its Michael D Higgins campaign.

Mr Higgins was as a Labour candidate during the last Presidential race but is running as an Independent this time.

Labour has plans to erect 4,000 posters and allocated a spend of €70,000 to the Presidential campaign.

Party leader Brendan Howlin today defended the use of posters in the campaign despite four of the six candidates in the contest saying they will not erect signage calling for support because of environmental concerns.

“They are an effective way of campaigning. We have always campaigned like that. It is an important way to connect with communities,” said Mr Howlin.

“We have negotiated with the Michael D Higgins campaign and we have been allocated a spend of €70,000 from the overall spend. We spent around €60,000 on the last referendum campaign and that is the sort of spend we expect to put in to the re-election of Michael D Higgins.

“In terms of the number of posters, we have an initial run of 4,000. I think there will be a demand for an awful lot more. Our organisations right across the country are looking to campaign to re-elect the president and an awful lot of people outside the Labour party family want to join us in that work.”

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