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Bruton red-faced after failing to get selected by Fine Gael

FINE Gael were today forced to add Jobs Minister Richard Bruton on to the party's General Election ticket after he failed to get selected as a candidate in his Dublin Bay North constituency.

Mr Bruton was left red-faced after he lost out at his selection convention to Dublin City councillor and former Lord Mayor Naoise O Muiri, as well as local activist Stephanie Regan.

Fine Gael will now have to run three candidates in what will be hotly-contested five seat constituency.

Ahead of last night's vote, Fine Gael headquarters issued a directive that the constituency ticket must consist of a male and female candidate to meet gender quotas.

Mr O Muiri, who secured the most votes, told delegates he needed to win outright to be put on the ticket.

Mr Bruton was automatically eliminated when Mr O Muiri topped the poll.

The party rushed to issue a statement last night insisting the minister would run in the forthcoming election.

Ms Regan rejected the suggestion her place on the ticket was due to gender quotas.

A source close to Mr Burton said members wanted three candidates to run and had voted tactically to secure this strategy.