Kinsella questions electorate’s honesty
THE WICKLOW POLL to some extent showed some surprises and in other ways went as expected.
There was always going to be a vast number of casualties given the large number of candidates but each of them held out hope that they would be the ones to gain seats, by some miracle.
While it’s usually the journalists who ask the questions, one of the most interesting question I was asked at the count centre was by Gerry Kinsella of Fís Nua - ‘ What I would like to know,’ he said, ‘Is the electorate as dishonest as the parties?’
Kinsella who was eliminated on the ninth count explained that as a first time candidate he was realistic about his chances but was truly shocked to have polled so badly.
‘Confused’ was how he described how he felt during the count.
‘I canvassed all of West Wicklow and got less than 20 votes there. What I do not understand is why would people tell me on the doorsteps that they planned to vote for me if they did not?’
A fair point to make given that Kinsella personally knocked on 1,500 doors and had estimated his figures from that but with just 324 first preferences fell far short of expectations.
Admittedly, Kinsella said he was ‘ trying something new’ with his campaign which centred around an informative DVD and leaflet drop without the usual posters.
‘I knocked on an unreal amount of doors and got a great response. It was a learning curve and I was very naive about how it all works but I really got the general feeling that people would vote for me. Instead they voted for Fianna Fáil in another colour.’
This ‘ learning curve’ was steep enough to extinguish Kinsella’s political aspirations for the present however.
‘ That’s the end of that. Why would I run again? I believe that I offered an alternative and that people wanted to see more Independents but instead they voted for the very same thing.’
Gerry Kinsella of Fís Nua.