Tired Timmins delighted to be second man home
FINE GAEL’S BILLY TIMMINS was the second man home in Wicklow and was elected after count 17 exceeding the quota with a total vote of 11,867.
He had received a first preference vote of 9,165 putting him behind running mate Andrew Doyle leaving him poised to take the second seat.
Timmins picked up transfers steadily and was elected to the 31st Dáil after the redistribution of Pat Fitzgerald's vote of 7,004 during count 17.
Elected in the early hours of yesterday (Tuesday) Billy Timmins said he 'was tired but delighted'.
‘It is a great achievement for Fine Gael. We put in a real team effort. Not just the three of us (Doyle, Harris and himself) but all the Fine Gael representatives in County Wicklow. They all put in tremendous work over a period of time to build up the party.
‘This is not an overnight success. We have put in a lot of hard work and commitment and that has to be sustained.'
Deputy Timmins said he was delighted to see the Fine Gael party taking the first two seats in the constituency and said it looked extremely likely that Simon Harris would take the third seat completing the hat trick for the party.
‘It is great and there is a strong wind behind us at the moment and we knew Fianna Fáil were in a difficult position while the Labour Party in Wicklow are in transition.
‘It’s great we picked up three seats and there is going to be difficult times ahead.
‘This is a great day for Fine Gael in Wicklow and East Carlow. Nobody ever envisaged it but over the last couple years the party has grown and we now have nine members of the local county council, three members in the Dáil and a number of town councillors. ‘It is a team effort,’ he stressed. He paid tribute to all who supported him throughout his campaign including his family and his campaign team. He also thanked the people of Wicklow and East Carlow for the courtesy he had been shown on the doors.
With Fine Gael after delivering not only three seats in the constituency but the top three seats speculation quickly turned to the possibility of a Ministerial position in Wicklow.
‘It is the prerogative of the party leader, Enda Kenny, to pick his cabinet but I am willing to serve. Who wouldn’t want the opportunity to sit on the bench?’ asked Timmins.
‘Certainly the result in Wicklow, in my view, is one of the most successful in the country. Enda Kenny will pick the team that he thinks is best for the country.’
Deputy Timmins went on to pay tribute to outgoing deputies Liz McManus, Joe Behan and Dick Roche and thanked them for their camaraderie over the years and their cooperation.
Joe Behan was one of the first people to congratulate Tiimmins on his election despite having been eliminated himself some three counts earlier.