Bray People - - ABOUT GREYSTONES -

BABY OF THE DAIL, Si­mon Har­ris, is aware he is the butt of many jokes be­cause of his age but it is like wa­ter of a duck's back. He said that ev­ery­one needs an an­gle and if his is his youth well so be it.

‘I have seen lots of jokes on twit­ter and that about my age. There was one about Enda Kenny go­ing to the Phoenix Park to col­lect his seal of of­fice from the Pres­i­dent and some­one won­dered if he was go­ing to drop me off to visit the zoo!'

How­ever, as ev­ery older sib­ling knows there are some great ad­van­tages to be­ing the baby and Si­mon has his first taste of that on Wed­nes­day when he had the op­por­tu­nity to nom­i­nate his party leader, Enda Kenny, for Taoiseach.

‘He (Enda) rang me last night in per­son and said it was a long tra­di­tion of his to have the youngest mem­ber to do the nom­i­na­tion and I was happy to oblige. It was emo­tional and I was ex­tremely ner­vous un­til I stood up to do it and then some­thing just came over me.

‘I never imag­ined that nom­i­nat­ing Enda Kenny for Taoiseach would be my maiden speech. I al­ways thought my maiden speech would be on some­thing to­tally ob­scure late at night with only one or two peo­ple in the cham­ber', he laughed. ‘ But the first mo­tion I pro­posed in the Dail was passed!'

Si­mon said that not only was it a party hon­our to nom­i­nate his leader as Taoiseach it was a per­sonal hon­our as well. ‘I re­ally like Enda Kenny and I think there is an hon­esty and a de­cency to him.'

Hav­ing worked as a par­lia­men­tary as­sis­tant for for­mer Sen­a­tor and now Deputy Frances Fitzger­ald, Si­mon has been around the hal­lowed col­lid­ers of Le­in­ster House for the last num­ber of years but said walk­ing in the gates as a deputy was a fan­tas­tic feel­ing.

‘It was great walk­ing in to­day. Ob­vi­ously I have been in and out since my elec­tion and of course I worked here but to take a seat in Wick­low and to come here in my own right is fan­tas­tic. I knew the phys­i­cal lay­out but now I need to know about the work­ings of the Dáil.

‘ Walk­ing in the gates brings back the mem­o­ries of why I am here and the man­date I re­ceived from the peo­ple. I am not here for my­self but rep­re­sent­ing the peo­ple of Wick­low and East Car­low.'

Wear­ing his ‘ lucky elec­tion tie' Si­mon was joined in Dail Eire­ann by his par­ents Mary and Bart and si­b­lings Adam and Gemma. He said it was a great com­fort to have them there and in­deed when he stood to make his maiden speech ‘I could see Adam in my di­rect eye line which was great.'

His girl­friend, Gorey nurse Caoimhe Wade, was un­for­tu­nately out of the coun­try due to a long stand­ing fam­ily com­mit­ment and missed his first day al­though she was keep­ing in con­stant con­tact by text through­out the day.

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