Fitzgerald chosen as candidate for Fine Gael in Dublin Mid-West constituency

Update 10.54pm: Frances Fitzgerald has been selected as a candidate for Fine Gael in the Dublin Mid-West constituency.

It comes just hours after she stood down as Tánaiste.

The Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe was among those who turned out at the selection convention in Lucan, in support of Deputy Fitzgerald.

Earlier: 'I wanted to vindicate my good name' says Fitzgerald as she meets constituents

Former Tánaiste Frances Fitzgerald says she wants to vindicate her name as she spoke publicly about her resignation over the controversial Maurice McCabe email saga tonight, writes Juno McEnroe.

She thanked supporters tonight for attending the Fine Gael Dublin Mid West selection convention at Finnstown House in Lucan, where she is seeking members support to contest the next election.

Proposers said, despite events in recent days, she had worked hard for the area and poorest areas of the constituency.

Photo: Eamonn Farrell/RollingNews.ie

She said she had told Taoiseach Leo Varadkar earlier today that her resignation was needed for the good of the country especially with Brexit challenges ahead.

But the Tanaiste conceded it was a "tough" time for her and she had found it hard to get to talk about the email issues in recent days with what she described as a "frenzy".

She also added: "I wanted to vindicate my good name as well, of course."

Ms Fitzgerald called on members attending the hotel event this evening to back her and therefor send out a strong message on behalf of the party. Local councillor Emer Higgins is also seeking election.

Ms Fitzgerald also said Mr Varadkar had asked her to continue to play a "full role" in public life and at the "highest level".

Earlier, flanked by gardai, Ms Fitzgerald arrived at the hotel but refused to talk to awaiting media.

Earlier: Frances Fitzgerald vows to bounce back as she meets local supporters

Just hours after announcing her resignation as Tánaiste, a defiant Frances Fitzgerald sent a clear message to her opponents that she was not going away for good.

Several people offered hugs and words of support to the woman at the centre of a political crisis that almost collapsed the Government.

"I'm not too bad considering all that has happened", she told well-wishers.

The selection conventions were convened days ago when a pre-Christmas election looked likely.

Although that election was averted earlier in the day by Ms Fitzgerald's resignation the Government has been badly weakened by the controversy.

It is thought an election could be called within a matter of months.

Despite resigning "for the good of the country" Ms Fitzgerald has remained defiant that her political career was not over.

Shortly after announcing she was stepping down as Tánaiste she went on Twitter to announce: "Just to confirm Dublin Mid-West @FineGael Selection Convention is still going ahead this evening in @FinnstownDublin and I will be putting my name forward for Selection. Looking forward to meeting local members."

The 67-year-old's history with Fine Gael dates back more than 25 years.

Ms Fitzgerald has been a TD since 2011, and also served between 1992 and 2002.


 

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