It’s a big weekend for Fianna Fáil in Kerry as party members meet on Sunday to vote for their preferred runner in the next general election.
The decision to select just one Kerry candidate means competition will be fierce with a number of well-known figures seeking support for the party nomination.
Sitting TD John Brassil and ex-TD Tom McEllistrim from Tralee appear to be the two favourites to get the nod, while Waterville councillor Norma Moriarty, who ran alongside Brassil in 2016, and Michael Cahill, a councillor from Rossbeigh, have also declared their interest.
Milltown councillor Michael D. O’Shea and the Mayor of Tralee, Norma Foley, are expected to complete the shortlist.
Two men who will definitely not be throwing their hats into the ring are Mayor of Killarney Niall Kelleher and Senator Mark Daly. Cllr Kelleher had earlier expressed his interest, saying he would be “honoured to receive nominations to contest the convention.”
“Members supporters and others from my own area and throughout Kerry have been in touch asking me to consider joining John Brassil TD on the Fianna Fáil ticket for the next general election in Kerry as they believe as do I that Killarney and East Kerry needs a TD,” he said. “It is something that I have been considering along with family, friends and supporters.”
The party’s decision to select just one candidate ultimately led Kelleher, along with Daly, to withdraw as both had insisted that they would not run against Brassil.
This might change at later date, however, if Fianna Fáil decide to add another name to the ballot.