Monday 20 November 2017

Fianna Fail must deal with its past, including Reynolds

Mary McAleese
Mary McAleese

We stood outside the door of the Fianna Fail Party rooms on the fifth floor of Leinster House, waiting for the results of the selection convention for the party's candidate in the forthcoming Presidential election. A very small team of people with Albert Reynolds had set up temporary shop in one of our offices across the narrow corridor from the party rooms.

Outside on the hallway, the erudite and urbane advertising executives and PR men looked like an explosion in a Louis Copeland shop as they lined the walls and paced the walkways with intent, waiting for Albert to appear so that they could be the first to shake his hand in the hope he might enlist their services for the lucrative campaign.  

Quietly, a rather solemn figure emerged from the room where the counting was taking place. It was not Albert but his son. He held his composure, but he had the demeanour of a man who knew that this particular race was already lost. As news finally filtered out, it was at last officially confirmed that it was Mary McAleese who had been selected and not Albert.

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