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TALLAFORNIA star Jay Abbey has thanked Senator David Norris for ensuring that the TV3 programme goes out with a bang this week.

The failed presidential candidate described the show as "compulsive and repulsive" in the Seanad this week, and called for a debate on the "standards in Irish life and ... values".

While his harsh comments could have have sparked the anger of the reality series' participants, Tallafornia housemate Jay has insisted that Senator Norris had done them all a favour.


"Anyone that didn't know about the show or that had avoided it until now, is now going to run home to watch it," Jay (30) predicted.

"I'd say half the people in the Seanad had no idea about what he was talking about, they might have heard about the programme but they're not the target audience so they probably went home and googled Tallafornia the minute they got home. "I always felt that TV3 had kept the most [explicit footage] for the last two episodes and with the show ending on Friday, we will have a great finally -- and all thanks to Norris."

Jay, who works as a shop fitter by day and a stripper by night, suggested that the senator's remarks were a publicity stunt.

"Everyone knows that we have incredibly high unemployment, everyone has heard about the thousands that are emigrating every month so I think he just wanted to stand out. If you stand up and talk about something that is completely different from the usual topics brought to the Seanad, then you're bound to catch the public's interest. Norris has every radio in the country talking about him and the programme -- it's not only good for us, it's good for him. There are people who weren't interested in politics because they can't relate to it, suddenly they want to be part of the debate, they want to find out more about Norris."

See Michael O'Doherty, Page 29