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Finn seeking Seanad seat

Wednesday, 12th February, 2020 4:40pm

As the dust settles on Ireland’s new political landscape, one former lord mayor has thrown his hat in the ring for the Seanad.

Independent Cllr Mick Finn announced this week that he is intending to run in the next Seanad election because he believes that there needs to be more representation in the upper house for the Cork region while admitting that it will be a huge challenge.

Cllr Finn, who repeated his poll-topping performance in his ward at the last local elections, said it would be “an uphill task but worth a shot”.

He continued: “People have been asking why I didn’t run in the recent General Election and to be honest, I couldn’t see beyond the four sitting TDs in Cork South Central which proved to be the case even though Green Party candidate Lorna Bogue amassed a huge vote in the end to her credit. It’s very difficult for non-party candidates to make the breakthrough in Cork so I felt it might be better to look at the Seanad, although I have said in the past that this body needs to be reformed for it to function properly.”

He continued: “There are only three seats nationally, currently occupied by high profile candidates and the competition will be fierce. However, I have nothing to lose by putting my name forward and if graduates from the universities and associated colleges think I can do a job at national level, they can consider me for a vote.”

While there are other avenues to the Seanad via the various panels, Cllr Finn says that he would not have the time to go on the campaign trail which would necessarily bring him all over the country.

Cllr Finn is in his third term as a city councilor having been first elected to Cork City Council in 2009. He ran twice in a general election, finishing sixth in the South Central four seater in 2016. In 2018/19, he became only the second non-party councilor to be elected lord mayor of Cork and the first since the mid-1940s.

“I am realistic enough to know that the issues facing people cannot be resolved in the Seanad alone but a national platform would offer me a better chance to help ensure that the type of changes people voted for in this Dáil election can be rolled out,” he said.

Currently working as a Youth Officer with Cork ETB, he has also worked in DEIS schools on the southside of the city for ten years and was a member of the UCC Board of Governors during his time as lord mayor.

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