Niall Blaney bows out of Donegal NE

The one man I thought was certain to take the field  for Fianna Fail was Niall Blaney TD in Donegal North East. After his notification last night that he would not, the man who will take his place is a guy called Charlie McConalogue from Carndonagh (preferred over Senator Cecilia Keaveney). Adds: it may be part of a general cut and run theme.

If I were to make an educated guess it may be that the Blaney machine is defecting to Sinn Fein camp on an uncomfortable/unsustainable level. Not everyone in the family was greatly enamoured of Niall’s decision to return to  Fianna Fail.

It confirms that the two frontrunners in this three seater are Padraig McLochlainn of Sinn Fein and Joe McHugh of Fine Gael. But Sean Donnelly has just suggested that McConalogue could be challenged by Jimmy Harte who is running for Labour.

Unlike Frank McBrearty, he has a political pedigree in the constituency (even as Labour does not). He’s the son of former Fine Gael TD Paddy Harte, and has a strong base in the Letterkenny area.

On pure numbers you’d be tempted to think there just isn’t enough core vote there for Harte (who would need to take first preferences from both McHugh and from Jim McDaid’s support). But if the patterns of Donegal South West repeat, who knows what will happen with transfers.

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  • Drumlins Rock

    I’m guessing its a long time since there wasn’t a Blaney involved in Donegal politics, which is probably a good thing, family Dynasties as part of the “2nd Republic” are not needed.

  • Greenflag

    The relationship of the Blaney ‘dynasty’ in Donegal to FF is a long one .TK Whitaker in an interview mentioned that during the Lemass /O’Neill talks – which he and his northern counterpart set up- the bould Captain said that he regretted that Co Donegal was not part of Northern Ireland . Whitaker recalls that Sean Lemass quick as a flash replied to Captain O’Neill that he could have Donegal as long as he took the Blaney’s with it.

    The 1960’s edition of the Chuckie Brothers Chronicles :)?

  • ItwasSammyMcNally

    The requirement for a Blaney family member was at least partially (and probably largely) to do with there being a requirement for a ‘proper’ republican ie not a FFer, so it was always going to be fertile Green territory for a SFer.

  • fitzjameshorse1745

    Political Careers are a demonstration of Optimism. Swings and Roundabouts. This is true of Fiann Fáil. Few would be “cutting and running” (and Im not fond of the term as it implies cowardice) if they thought it likely they coul be on the Government benches in five or even ten years.
    Its signing up to Misery.

  • lover not a fighter

    Its actually drawdropping to see how man Fianna failers are jumping ship. There own polling must be telling them dire news.

    Sinn Féin must surely pick up a sizable proportion of of this vote.

    If for whatever reason they do not the bearded one must step down.

  • redhugh78
  • Munsterview

    “If I were to make an educated guess it may be that the Blaney machine is defecting to Sinn Fein camp on an uncomfortable/unsustainable level. Not everyone in the family was greatly enamoured of Niall’s decision to return to Fianna Fail…..”

    That was my impression also haveing spoken with people up there the night of Pearses election!

  • Mick Fealty

    Red, can’t you wait for the official campaign begins this afternoon before you go fly-postering over other party’s stories?

  • redhugh78

    Mick,
    I was offfering you the link as you seem to be unable to find it when it IS a SF story, hence the ‘double standards’.

  • Munsterview

    redh…. : Check out your link, it do not seem contain whatever information you intended to convey.

  • redhugh78

    munsterview,
    The SF logo?, that is what it’s meant to link to, you notice it never appears on Slugger despite all other partie’s logos beng used and despite the plethora of SF blogs.

  • Munsterview

    Point taken !