The Limerick Candidates And Success

What does success mean to the Limerick City candidates? What are they looking for?

I mean obviously they’re trying to be elected to the Dail, but that is an aspiration realistic only for six of the 11 men and women competing. The rest are smart enough to know they don’t have a chance to get into the top four, and are running either to make a point (Kiely and O’Donoghue) or to just fill in a space for a party (Cahill and Prendiville) or because they’re a sitting TD.

Let’s have a look at them, by party.

Fianna Fail
Willie O’Dea

Well, it’s been a hell of a year, so I suspect Willie will just want to get over the line. The local animosity between him and Power means that O’Dea isn’t going to be rubbing sand in his hair if his fellow FFer fails to make the cut. As it is, he’ll know that he’s fairly safe to finish in that top four, even if it takes a few counts to get him there.

O’Dea would just love to stick it to Quinlivan and the Greens by finishing first again though. Top two is what will constitute success, fourth is his minimum. Failure is anything less.

Peter Power
Poor Pete. How can he be comfortable knowing that the only reason he has gotten elected the last two times is called “Willie O’Dea’s surplus” and little else?

Power isn’t getting re-elected. It’s beyond the borders of the possible in this election.

Success is getting as close as possible. Fifth is an outside bet, sixth or seventh more possible. He’ll want to make as big an impact as he can, so that he stays on Fianna Fail’s radar for the next time. He’ll want to try to get transfers off someone other than O’Dea (unlikely). Success is not being humiliated, finishing ahead of Quinlivan especially. Failure is bottom four.

Fine Gael
Michael Noonan

Well, he knows he’s getting re-elected and he knows it’s going to be in either first or second. He knows this so much, he doesn’t even have to canvass much in Limerick. So, success for Noonan means not just getting back into the Dail (a certainty) but getting a big enough surplus so that he can get Kieran O’ Donnell in with him. It’s possible but a lot of factors are stacked against such an outcome.

Failure is finishing third or fourth, and the loss of FGs second seat in the constituency.

Kieran O’Donnell
In a hell of a battle, and very reliant on Noonan’s surplus. Like Power, he is in the unenviable position of simply trying to make as good a go at it as possible, though he still has plenty of hope for success. In that regard, success in getting that last spot ahead of Leddin, Quinlivan and Power, though a close fifth would not be the end of the world. Thinking on 2016 and all that.

Failure would be a lower placed finish. Being placed behind Quinlivan or (somehow) Power would be very bad for the Castleconnell man, and might spell the end of his Dail prospects permanently.

Labour
Jan O’Sullivan

Not a whole lot of news about her yet, she’s been quiet. Another dead cert for re-election, like Noonan, success is getting the surplus to take her running mate in with her. In that, I believe she is better placed to do it then her FG opposite. Speaking of herself, a second place finish would be quite the feather in her cap. Failure would be the surprise of a fourth placed finish (if Noonan has a big enough surplus to get O’ Donnell in over her) and not having near enough votes to help out Joe Leddin. Her candidacy is a real litmus test for Labour aspirations in the region.

Joe Leddin
The former Mayor has plenty of reasons to be cheerful, but it will all come down to surpluses and transfers. Success for him is that last seat, and turning Limerick into a Labour city. Failure is fifth or sixth and lower than that is a disaster.

Sinn Fein
Maurice Quinlivan

On paper, he would appear to have a great chance, but it doesn’t bear out in the localities. I suppose success is that fourth seat, but it’s well beyond his reach. He has no transfers coming his way of any great nature. Fifth would be good for the Party, maybe setting it up for a future run in 2016, Quinlivan is a young enough man. Beating out Power must be a primary aim.

Failure is finishing last of the potentials, behind Leddin, O’ Donnell and Power. That would destroy any illusions about Sinn Fein power nationally, and be a rather humiliating result for Quinlivan personally, seeing his great rival O’Dea best him in a huge way.

Greens
Sheila Cahill

Not much she can do. She has little hope of really effecting the race, and he candidacy seems to be just seat filling. Finishing best out of the “also-rans” would be success for her, eighth or so. Failure is having to share the lowest rungs with the Christian Solidarity Party.

ULA
Cian Prendiville

No chance of election, but what Prendiville will want is to steal votes from Labour and have an effect on the larger race. Success is helping stop Leddin from getting in, and finishing eighth or so. Amazing success would be to outdo Quinlivan or Power.

Failure would be a paltry vote percentage and a place in the double figures, realising the suspicion that the ULA are a force only in Dublin.

Christian Solidarity
Conor O’Donoghue

Success is getting in the media a bit, and getting more than last times 171 votes. I suppose tenth place is an aspiration. Failure? I guess failure is relative when you’re rooted to bottom place. Not getting triple figures I suppose.

Independents
Kevin Kiely

He must know that he can’t get elected, and he’s really running to prove a point. What that point is, I’m not sure (Get back at Fine Gael I guess). Success is breaking into that chasing pack, stealing votes from Noonan and O’Donnell, finishing somewhere around sixth or seventh. Failure is not even challenging for bigger then 5% of the vote, and languishing unobserved back in eighth or ninth.

This entry was posted in General Election 2011, Ireland, Limerick, Politics and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to The Limerick Candidates And Success

  1. Pingback: NFBs General Election Index | Never Felt Better

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