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Norris launches campaign for Presidential election nomination

The independent senator kicks off his campaign to get on the ticket for the Presidency, acknowledging his task is tough.

Image: Niall Carson/PA Wire

SENATOR DAVID NORRIS has officially launched his campaign for the presidency of Ireland, acknowledging that he faces a difficult task in successfully getting his name on the ballot papers.

The independent Senator – who has been a member of the Seanad for 24 years, for the Dublin University constituency – needs to seek the nomination of four county councils, or the nomination of twenty members of the Oireachtas, in order to submit a valid nomination.

As a non-party candidate, the latter avenue is made difficult, because he has no political party to seek the support of – making the council nominations option the more likely one.

“I don’t have a party machine,” Norris acknowledged on this afternoon’s News at One. “At the moment, I am an independent.

“This, I believe, is a plus,” he continued, saying his status would allow him to draw support from across the political spectrum.

He was still open, however, to seeking the support of 20 members of the Oireachtas – noting that the recent general election, which returned 14 independent TDs, made the process of seeking such a nomination much easier than it had previously been.

Norris has written to the chairpersons of each county council, he said, and would be attending the monthly meeting of Longford’s County Council next month in order to begin the process of seeking the councils’ support.

“All I’m asking for is an opportunity to put myself before the people,” he said. “I am today announcing my application for the job of President.”

He also added that he didn’t think of himself as a prospective “gay president”, but rather a “president who happens to be gay” – saying he felt the public had become “bored” of discussions on his sexuality.

Labour’s parliamentary party will begin its own discussions on its presidential nomination tomorrow.

Listen to Norris on RTÉ’s News at One >

About the author:

Gavan Reilly

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