There is shock in Kerry this morning at rumours that Kerry TD Brendan Griffin is unlikely to run in the next General Election.
The youngest TD in the county, the Fine Gael TD was first elected in 2011 in the then Kerry South constituency and has retained his seat in every election since.
It seemed also certain that he would have retained his seat in the next General Election too. He is one of the party’s strongest candidates and a decision not to run for Fine Gael in the county will be a blow to the party.
Already speculation is mounting on who will run for the party in the General Election but there is no clear candidates emerging though Cllr Aoife Thornton's name was very much on the radar at the last General Election so she could be a potential candidate but ultimately Cllr Mike Kennelly ran for the party alongside Brendan Griffin.
There have been rumours that TD Brendan Griffin would not run since before Christmas when it was understood that he turned down a junior minister position due to family commitments. He is a father to two children.
When contacted by The Kerryman this morning the TD did not confirm he would not run in a statement, though he did not deny the news.
“I will not be commenting on speculation regarding the next general election at this point.
My focus is on serving people of Kerry as a TD. I am continuing to work hard on the important issues affecting the people of this county and this country and that is where my focus will remain,” he said.
"Naturally some people will always be curious about future elections but with an election 21 months away, my priority for now is to do my best every day for the people I represent.”
He served as Minister for State for Tourism and Sport and as Deputy Chief Whip.