RETIRING councillor, James Breen is predicting a real battle for the final seat in the Ennis municipal district. Outgoing councillors, Clare Colleran Molloy (FF), Johnny Flynn (FG), Paul Murphy (FG), Mary Howard (FG) and Pat Daly (FF) look in strong positions to retain their seats, according to tallies. New candidate, Mark Nestor (FF), has also put in a strong performance and Ann Norton (IND) is also well in the hunt to retain the seat she won in 2014. Throw in a number of candidates within shouting distance of a likely quota and it all adds up to a tight race.
“Look it it’s all to play for in Ennis. At the moment, nearly every candidate is about 200 short of the quota. The quota is 1485. You’re going to have four people elected in Ennis very soon,” James Breen said. “They’ll all be pulling from the one pot. A transfer vote in a local election can transfer all over the place. In a general election they are transferred, party to party. The last seat will be very, very interesting in Ennis.
“At this stage, it’s a very emotional day for people and I wouldn’t like to be exciting anyone by saying who I think will get it. All I’ll say is that the last seat in Ennis will be interesting.”
It’s also a unusual day for the former TD, who has bowed out of Clare politics. “It’s my first time in 40 years I’m not on the ballot paper. And look, I’m happy. You’ve got to know when to hold them and know when to fold them, as they say in poker!” he said.