OK, so, let’s go through these from last to first, because I am nothing if not needlessly dramatic. In the hyperlinks are my individual posts on all the candidates.
Dublin West has twelve candidates contesting four seats. Below is how my preferences will shake out. Do the smart thing yourself and fill out your ballot paper from top to bottom. Anyone telling you to avoid giving preferences to candidates you don’t like does not have sufficient understanding of PR-STV!
His candidacy in Dublin West is the trifecta of suck: a pointless publicity stunt, an insult to the voters and an unjustified ego trip. Polling would indicate that Casey is not a runner here or in Donegal. One can hope.
I have no idea who this guy is, or why he is running in my constituency, or why he is running in so many other constituencies. What was the point of him even being here? Still, I’ll take a punt on him not being as unsuitable for office as Casey.
I have pretty much no interest in the pro-life spin-off of Sinn Fein, that has all the hallmarks of Renua without even their pretensions at relevance. MacManus, a former Fianna Failer, doesn’t really interest me either, but I place him this far up because he is an actual candidate and is actually looking for my vote, unlike the two below him. Still, Aontu is a party that will never rank even at a mid-pack level for me.
His appearance on Claire Byrne Live exposed Chambers for what he is: an odious dinosaur from another decade, parasitically getting elected off of the legacy of the Lenihan family. He’s Fianna Fail, he’s pro-life, he’s not fit for office, that has been made abundantly clear in this campaign, though it was last time as well. Still better than Aontu though!
Whether she is running just as an establishing exercise or whether she has been selected to aid in the reaching of gender quota targets, Currie is a non-entity of a candidate, dependent entirely on Varadkar’s surplus for any chance at success. Her platform is a damp squib, and she really does not have the experience or the qualifications for this level of office.
Ranked ahead of Currie purely because she happens to be an entity as opposed to a non-entity, Burton really gives off the unmistakable sense that the game is up this time. Her campaign has been limited, the result treated as a foregone conclusion. Her record over the last nine years is abysmal. In a way it is sad that it had to end like this, and if nothing else, she’s sort of left-wing. Regardless, time to say goodbye.
Always good to have a Taoiseach in your constituency, about the only reason I would put Varadkar this high (and because I would still pick a Fine Gaeler over a Fianna Failer or Aontu or Burton’s brand of Labour). He’s stumbled too much as the leader of the land, and I couldn’t give someone so PR-obsessed without the substance to back it up a higher preference than this.
While he hasn’t a hope of getting elected, I appreciate O’Loughlin’s platform and him being a rare candidate from an otherwise overlooked part of the constituency. Hopefully we’ll see him again in the next locals, because he probably deserves a chance at some level of office.
I did consider a higher preference here, but I still have an innate reluctance to bump Sinn Fein up. The financials are a bit iffy, the connections to the past haven’t entirely gone away. But at the same time, they are the best, most realistic, prospect for genuine change in this country’s politics. Donnelly, likely to win a seat this time out, seems like a decent candidate, as Sinn Fein candidates go. God knows he’s been here long enough, though not quite as long as…
I have my reservations about both O’Gorman – undoubtedly in the pro-capitalism moderate wing of the party – and the Greens in general – a surprisingly conservative environmentally-focused party – but the climate crisis needs to be addressed, and one of the best ways to do that is an expression of the popular will. O’Gorman has been working in this area for a very long time now, and I think he would be a good TD.
Hey, he made it this far up the card. Notwithstanding some small amount of antipathy I have towards the candidate, the Social Democrats are a party I have found myself consistently able to get behind since their creation, with a manifesto and an attitude that I think Ireland could do far worse than get behind. The likelihood of a Nordic model being implemented anytime soon is small, but every little helps in the pursuit of that goal.
No one in Dublin West has impressed my as much as Coppinger has, through her work on Repeal, through her committee stances, through her ability to speak out, hold a shady government to account, and generally feel like someone who represents the constituency well. I think that that Dail needs more people like her, not less, even if it is just to be the annoying voice in the ear shouting from the opposition benches for eternity. In the face of so many crises currently affecting our country, a turn to the left, even the hard-left, is now a requirement.
As to how I actually think the vote will turn out, well, I will leave that until tomorrow, for both Dublin West, and for the country at large.