Murphy’s Law!

Cllr. Eugene Murphy chosen to run for FF

After 20 years of unsuccessful convention bids, Cllr. Eugene Murphy was selected to represent Fianna Fáil in a General Election yesterday (Sunday).

  He defeated his only challenger, Ballintubber man Seán Óg Higgins, in the Roscommon-Galway Selection Convention held in the Abbey Hotel, Roscommon town, on Sunday night.

  He won by a significant margin – 216 votes to 145 – out of a valid poll of 361. A further two votes were spoiled. In total, Cllr. Murphy secured 67 per cent of the votes cast.

  It represents a great victory for the Scramogue man, who has been the bridesmaid at so many Dáil conventions, most recently losing to Cllr. Ivan Connaughton in the race to be the party’s candidate in the Roscommon-South Leitrim by-election in October 2014.

  The 56-year-old was been a councillor continuously since 1985 – his rival, Mr Higgins, 26, wasn’t event born at that point – and has always harboured ambitions of becoming a TD. Until now, however, he was never able to secure a party nomination.

  Sunday’s long-awaited convention was hastily organised and took place just five days before Christmas. Only 56 per cent of the 640 party members who were eligible to vote actually attended.

   The convention was chaired by Laois-Offaly TD Barry Cowen, who told the crowd that the party’s directive was to select just one of the two candidates.

  The convention then convened for about half an hour while the voting took place.

  When it resumed, Deputy Cowen declared the result, which was greeted with rapturous applause by vast sections of the crowd, which was not surprising considering the number of party members who cast their votes in Cllr. Murphy’s favour.

  Cllr. Murphy was then deemed selected to represent the party in this constituency in the General Election in the New Year.