Fianna Fáil councillor Lisa McDonald has confirmed that she will be contesting the General Election despite not being selected to run in the recent by-election which was won by her party colleague Malcolm Byrne of Gorey.
Cllr. McDonald was originally chosen by party convention to run alongside sitting TD James Browne of Enniscorthy in a two-candidate strategy which was subsequently changed to four candidates, including Deputy Byrne and Cllr. Michael Sheehan of New Ross.
Fianna Fail is in the unusual position of heading into the next general election in Wexford with two sitting TD's, having secured only one seat in the last election in 2016.
Cllr. McDonald said the party's election outing is going to be made more difficult by having four candidates on the ticket in Wexford. 'That will make it difficult. It will definitely be a challenge'.
But if anyone thought she was going to bow out and leave the field to others, they were mistaken. 'I was selected by the people of Fianna Fail in Wexford and I won't let them down. I'm putting my best foot forward', she said.
'I was always running. I never said I wasn't running. I think there was a view in some quarters that I would pull out but if I'm nothing else, I'm a fighter.'
'The fact that we have four TD's in north Wexford is completely unrepresentative of the population. The whole area from Rosslare Strand to New Ross is unrepresented and it needs representation.
'Whether it's fisheries, farming, Rosslare Europort, access to G.P's, access to the health services, access to secondary school places, these issues are pivotal in south Wexford'.
'What we don't need now is voters electing more of the same 'yes' men. the system is benefiting the same people. I think the best example of that is the manner in which everything is so slow to change', she said.
Cllr. McDonald said people should question what improvements Wexford has seen in the past five years under the current government. 'They cut a few ribbons on shiny projects that were signed off on long and ever ago and opened new roads that were in the pipeline since 2007'.
'What has this government done for Wexford? Nobody is shouting about that. Nobody is holding them to account. If people know anything about me it is that I will shout and I will complain even within my own party when it is necessary'.
'Why is it that we can't seem to grapple with the things that aren't working, the health service which is a huge issue and housing which is an example of a system we could change but we don't.'