Brendan Ryan loses seat

July 26th, 2007 | by Andrew Ó Baoill |

Unfortunate news for Brendan Ryan, who I mentioned in yesterday’s post, as he narrowly missed out on retaining his Seanad seat today. The other two incumbents – teacher union leader Joe O’Toole and businessman Fergal Quinn – kept their seats, but Ryan – who has a strong record on social justice and inclusion, being most associated with his work with the Cork Simon community – is being replaced by Rónán Mullen, whose main claim to fame is as a former spokesperson for the Dublin diocese of the Catholic Church. So from a social progressive to a conservative. Ah, well. Some observers see Mullen as balancing new TCD-elected senator Ivana Bacik, who is a prominent pro-life advocate, but given the current situation regarding our laws on abortion and similar issues, somehow I’m not so concerned about the right getting more places to ‘balance’ Ivana.

In a strange twist of fate, the Labour Party had a second candidate by the name of Brendan Ryan seeking a Seanad seat – this time in one of the vocational panels – and since he got in there will still be a Labour senator called Brendan Ryan in the new Seanad.

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