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Ó Muircheartaigh 'really considering' bid as FF members want candidate

The party wants to run a candidate according to a survey of TDs and senators. Meanwhile Micheál Ó Muircheartaigh is mulling a possible run.

Micheál Ó Muircheartaigh
Micheál Ó Muircheartaigh
Image: INPHO/James Crombie

FORMER RTÉ COMMENTATOR Micheál Ó Muircheartaigh has said that he is “really considering” a bid for the presidency and revealed he will make a decision between “now and the end of next week” after consulting his family.

Ó Muircheartaigh told RTÉ’s Morning Ireland that he was considering a possible bid for the presidency because of the events of recent weeks: ”I’ve become involved through chance. I never set out to be anything in the political sphere.

“What’s really got to me is the vast surge of support from the people,” he said.

The former GAA broadcaster said that there had been a lot of “promised support” from people who would like to see him in the contest. But he would not say which politicians had contacted him only confirming that he had not been contacted by Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin.

He also said that he would “certainly run as an independent.”

Meanwhile, most Fianna Fáil TDs and senators want the party to run a candidate in the presidential election later this year according to a survey carried out by the Irish Independent.

Published today, David Whelan and Michael Brennan report that 25 of the party’s 34 TDs and senators were contacted in which 13 said they favoured a candidate, eight were undecided or refused to comment and only four were against the idea.

Former ministers Éamon Ó Cuiv and Mary Hanafin have been mooted as possible candidates in the past. The party’s MEP Brian Crowley has been most widely mentioned and included in recent opinion polls, securing 13 per cent in a recent Red C poll.

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However the Independent’s survey found that only five of the party’s Oireachtas contingent would back Crowley to run.

Party leader Martin threw his support behind possible independent Gay Byrne before the broadcaster withdrew from the race before he had even entered it over the weekend. Yesterday part whip Seán Ó Feargháil said it would be weeks before a decision would be made by the parliamentary party.

Read all the Race for the Áras coverage >

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Hugh O'Connell

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