Friday 17 November 2017

The families of IRA victims must give all of us pause for thought

We owe a huge debt to those whose loved ones were brutally murdered while defending our State, writes Willie O’Dea

Willie O’Dea

BY THIS day next week we will know who our next President is. Despite the polls in recent days, I remain convinced that the outcome is still uncertain.

There has been considerable volatility in the polls in recent weeks, with voters seriously considering almost all the contenders at various points. It is as if Newton's Third Law of Motion applied to Irish presidential campaigns. No sooner does a candidate move ahead in the polls than they are dragged back with attacks and smears by media and opponents.

It happened to Mary Davis in the first full week of campaigning. Her poll figures rose and suddenly rumours and innuendo about her appeared. If they were so pertinent and relevant, why hadn't these emerged during the months when she was seeking the council nominations? The reason is straightforward. She was not then perceived as a threat to other’s ambitions. Once the polls showed her as having a chance, out came the dark propaganda.

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