Former junior minister Barry Andrews has been selected as the party’s candidate for the upcoming European elections in Andrews beat competition from ex-ministers Mary Hanafin and Conor Lenihan and marriage equality campaigner Tiernan Brady to get the nomination.

His father, David Andrews, was TD for Dún Laoghaire between 1965 and 2002 and minister for foreign affairs on two separate occasions…

His cousin, Chris Andrews, was also a Fianna Fáil TD for Dublin South East from 2007 to 2011…and is now a Sinn Féin member of Dublin City Council.

Niall Andrews – Barry’s uncle and Chris’s father – was a TD for Dublin South between 1977 and 1987, and also served as a Fianna Fáil MEP for Dublin for 20 years…

Barry Andrews: European candidate plucked from Fianna Fáil royalty (Irish Times)


Across from Tiernan, in Column B, you have three former ministers, each seeking a return to national politics after some time away though, to be fair to Mary Hanafin she did get back into local politics as a councillor for Blackrock in 2014.

All three former ministers, each carrying a family name with strong political associations: Barry Andrews, Mary Hanafin and Conor Lenihan have not just proved their capabilities as Ministers, they each have admirable ministerial records

On this basis it can be argued that the Fianna Fáil in Dublin cannot avoid picking a strong candidate, but – and this is why I lump the three ex-ministers together and describe the choice as binary – the perceived strengths of the three amigos is also their collective weakness.

Reading the campaign emails and social media posts announcing their candidacies, it was easy to mistake one for the other. Each claimed their time as a minister, their Dáil experience and their recognised family name as a unique qualification to run, but the “unique” strengths which they each see as defining them barely separates them.

It is 15 years since Fianna Fáil last won a European Parliament seat in Dublin with Eoin Ryan (in 2004). That is a long time.

If Fianna Fáil wants to win a seat in Dublin this time – and it needs to – then it must reach out beyond its existing hinterland and attract voters who not have seen Fianna Fáil as speaking to or for them. Only one of the candidates on offer has the proven ability to do this.

The seat will not be won by nostalgically getting the old band back together to play some favourites – no matter how much some of us may care for the tune. The choice is clear.

Derek Mooney (What Separates Brady From The Bunch, January 22)



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13 thoughts on “Family First

  1. RuilleBuille

    Andrews was a disaster as Children’s Minister and a disaster as CEO of Goal which he left as the organisation was mired in fraud investigations. He is currently CEO of the Institute of International and European Affairs – a government funded body.

    Jobs for the boys.

    1. Mel

      Tubridy’s cousin and McSavage’s brother. Chris Andrewssay no more Worked for a few years as a teacher before getting on the gravy train. I’d never give a cent to Goal anyway but he left there under a cloud and we still haven’t heard much about the goings on there. maybe he’ll be asked that by one of our top quality journalists during his election campaign.
      Hanafin and Lenihan were the other candidates? It’s not a great reflection on the type of candidates Zanu FF have at their disposal.

  2. Daisy Chainsaw

    Steeped in Fianna Fail, isn’t he? Hereditary dail seat, DG of a state funded “think-tank” with charitable status, and a membership fee of €10k, and now looking to bury his snout in the MEP trough.

    Ching ching!

  3. Paulus

    Hope he doesn’t think that beating Hanafin and Lenihan was an achievement.
    (I don’t know much about Brady).

    I heard Crazy-Horse Lenihan on the radio recently and he’s still madder than Maddy McMad from Madsville.

  4. Pat Harding

    The “Clandrews” family what more can I say?

    Apart from being an odious individual, he was also a member of the worst government in the history of the state. The electorate of Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown did their country a favor in voting him out.

    His nomination is a reminder why Fianna Fáil are still the same rotten crowd below the surface?

    If there was an election for a special place in Hell, I might vote to send him there. He doesn’t deserve the European Parliament.

  5. Mary Jane

    Ah ‘Posh Boy’ Andrews…the spawn of the most nepotistic and grubbiest political dynasty in Irish history gets the nod again.

    Meanwhile, there are some serious outstanding questions about his time in charge of “Goal”

    ….answers please!

  6. Truth in the News

    And the Grandson of “Tod Andrews” who Chaired the RTE Authority , CIE and Bord Na Mona
    whose legacy was to shut down Railways, rip them up, even shut down the Hardcourt
    line……some legacy…..good FF pedigree, the divine right to rule and make a mess of

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