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.