ENDA KENNY HAS slammed the “economic cesspit” left behind by Fianna Fáil in a rousing address to his own party in Dublin this afternoon.
Speaking to a gathering of Fine Gael members and election candidates at the CHQ building on the quays, Kenny set out to motivate his team ahead of the last week of the general election campaign.
For sections of the speech when he was attacking his political opposition, the Taoiseach deployed the oratory technique of roaring into the microphone.
A Fine Gael produced video of Kenny’s speech earlier:
Upping the decibel levels, he shouted:
[We've taken] this country out of an economic cesspit that we inherited from Fianna Fáil! After fourteen years of government, they blew everything that we had!
Ever fond of a metaphor, he then compared the work of his grandfather – who was a lighthouse keeper – to the ongoing economic recovery, saying:
Everyone understood that big message: I’ll be home for tea.
He went on to urge party members to throw their support behind the candidates standing, name checking every single candidate standing in the Dublin area to cheers of approval from the crowd.
“They will stand up for you, for your family, for your city, for your county and for our country,” he said.
Then – back into full shouting mode – Kenny returned his focus to his political opponents.
Look at the other side. Disparate groups, no plan, invalid figures, others who would simply destroy anything that we’ve built up here.
“They’ve wrecked the house before,” he said, referring to Fianna Fáil. “They’re back battering the doors now saying: ‘We’re clean again, we’ve been absolved, everything is fine, give us a chance.’”
Pausing for a moment, he then belted out:
Well don’t give them a chance this time! Because they’ve got to earn it!
Kenny, never one to pass up a chance to talk about meeting the electorate, also spoke about an encounter with a 95-year-old woman earlier in the day.
“Today, at Kilbaha [a village in Co Clare], across the road a man said, ‘will you come and see my mother’. 95, she sat in her chair and she said, ‘I was always with you, and I still am’. And when we were leaving, after all the hassle and the babble and the talk and the lights of the cameras, she said, ‘would you like a cup of tea?’.”
Isn’t that who we are? Generous, welcoming Irish people?
Kenny’s unusual roaring during the speech drew a critical response from Fianna Fáil this afternoon.
The party tweeted a link to the infamous Howard Dean scream from the 2004 US presidential elections which was seen by many as the start of the demise of the Democratic candidate’s White House hopes:
- additional reporting from Hugh O’Connell