‘I Found Myself On The Floor’

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Speaking on RTÉ’s Today with Sean O’Rourke, she explained how the incident happened, saying she was holding a bottle of beer in her hand and was reaching for her friend’s bottle of wine when she fell from the swing.

In Circuit Court proceedings she accused the hotel of negligence as the swing was unsupervised at the time of the incident on 10 July 2015, the year before she was elected to the Dáil.

The Dún Laoghaire TD, who is the chairperson of the Committee on Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government, has withdrawn her legal action.

Ms Bailey ran a 10k race three weeks after the incident with the swing. She posted on her social media accounts that she had taken part in the race as she said that she “had nothing to hide”.

She said: “I had to lock myself away for three days this week and I couldn’t go home” because of the media attention over the story”.

Maria Bailey says she only wanted to recoup medical expenses (RTÉ)

Transcript to follow.

Earlier: A Limerick A Day

UPDATE:

Seán O’Rourke: “Maria Bailey, Fine Gael TD for Dun Laoghaire/Rathdown, good morning to you.”

Maria Bailey: “Morning, Seán.”

O’Rourke: “It’s often said there’s no such thing as bad publicity. You have got an awful lot of publicity in the last week – most of it in fact, virtually all of it has been bad and it has led to you deciding to drop your case against the Dean Hotel for negligence. You were looking for damages and also medical expenses – as result of an incident there a couple of years ago.

“Just tell me: Why have you decided to drop this case?”

Bailey: “Just to be clear, I’m not looking for damages. I was only looking to have my medical expenses recouped. And I was never looking for compensation. So what unfolded for me, this week, and I will say Seán this has been a hugely distressing, intrusive, abusive week that my family and I have succumbed to, completely unwarranted through leaked documents last Sunday.

“I received a phone call last Sunday from a journalist who had a lot of private, medical information about me, Seán and I don’t know about you but when you go to your GP, do you want people to know why you’re there?

“And he basically said to me, ‘I need a comment’. I said ‘this is a live case, I can’t prejudice that case’ and he knew that. And the response was, ‘well if you don’t, I have to fill a story’. Now that’s not a level-playing pitch.

“And as somebody who grew up on the sideline of a GAA pitch, I play fair, I don’t play offside.”

O’Rourke: “This though was presumably information which he acquired, or she acquired, through court documents.”

Bailey: “So we were at the very early stage here of preliminary exchanging documents, discovery documents. This case was only for listing, it was a closed file, it was not for the public information.”

O’Rourke: “Were there political dirty tricks involved?”

Bailey: “I’m not going to cast aspersions on air because that’s not the way I play. I will deal with that in my own way.”

O’Rourke: “Would it have been done and I obviously can’t ask you to name any names because we wouldn’t be able to publish those anyway, or broadcast them, but was it done from within your own party or from another party?”

Bailey: “I’m not going to cast aspersions, Seán.”

O’Rourke: “OK.”

Bailey: “I play fair.”

O’Rourke: “Fine.”

Bailey: “Unless a person is hear to defend themselves, I wouldn’t do that.”

O’Rourke: “I’m not asking you to name anybody but it does, it is a matter of interest that you believed this happened. You say you know this happened but you won’t say whether this happened within your own party or…”

Bailey: “This was, this was methodical, this was well-orchestrated, this was pre-planned to cause maximum damage and I am the collateral damage, in the interim, of that. And what unveiled after that, on the Tuesday, I had decided myself that I was going to withdraw the case because I didn’t want to be a distraction and I was advised, and rightly advised, that that would be seen as a cynical move the week of the local elections.

“And not because I had done anything wrong by the way – I was hurt. I have medical expenses. Nobody, nobody questions that here.

“And the reason it took such great traction here, Seán, is I am the subject of clickbait. So it was trending so well and I have to say, well done, like I handed them a fantastic headline, I accept that.”

O’Rourke: “OK, but hold on a minute, when you say, you know, you want to play fair and so forth, what about your party colleagues up and down the country?

“A colleague of mine this morning, from County Monaghan, saying she met a local Fine Gael councillor in that part of the country saying ‘we got an awful lot about Maria Bailey’. I mean did you give any thought to what they had to deal with on the doorsteps?”

Bailey: “Seán, I have been through numerous elections. They are highly emotive times. You are absolutely worn out, flat tired by the last week. An election is not won in the last week or lost in the last week.”

O’Rourke: “Yeah but you could have pulled out. I mean, like, did you look for advice from within the party?’

Bailey: “Absolutely. Looked I seeked advice, legal advice as well, I was told it was seen as a cynical move.”

O’Rourke: “Sorry was that the political advice or the …”

Bailey: “No, the legal advice. And regardless, regardless of that Seán, the papers were still going to print…”

O’Rourke: “But did you ring for instance. Did you ring somebody like Tom Curran, the general secretary of Fine Gael?”

Bailey: “Seán, I’m not going to name people here. I don’t do that.”

O’Rourke: “Did you come under pressure from the Taoiseach or anybody in the party…”

Bailey: “Absolutely not.”

O’Rourke: “OK.”

Bailey: “It was a private matter. This happened long before I was a TD, I was a councillor at the time.”

O’Rourke: “Right, now, can I just go back because you have an understandable grievance that what was a private matter, medical reports and so forth became public, nonetheless, you know, that is what happened.

“Can we go right back to the night in July of 2015. What happened?”

Bailey: “As you know, Seán, I’m not a big social animal. I rarely go out to be honest, I’m quite happy to sit at home, pyjamas on, on the couch with the kids. But I went out that night. We met at my friend’s house in Sandyford, we had a glass of wine each, we hopped on the Luas and we went to a bar/hotel that had just recently opened.

“We purchased a drink each at the bar which we didn’t consume, we went up in the lift, we saw the swings, nobody was drunk, nobody was messing. They’re like polished wood, these seats.

“I sat on them. I did have a bottle of beer in my hand and the next thing I knew I was on the floor.”

O’Rourke: “OK, one bottle of beer in one hand?”

Bailey: “I had my beer in my hand and then I was reaching for my friend’s, I had a bottle of wine, she was taking her camera out of her jacket. I then found myself on the floor, I was mortified. I jumped up because I was just mortified. I went to the bathroom with two of my friends to assess, I had a few cuts and grazes, whatever. I went down to the reception, I asked for some plasters.

“And at all times, I will have to say to you, and during the last, during the course of this, the hotel have always been respectful and very decent.”

O’Rourke: “Just clarify one thing: Did you have something in each hand when this happened?”

Bailey: “Seán, that would have been a case for the judge to adjudicate on and I’m not going to get into..”

O’Rourke: “But what is your recollection?”

Bailey: “Seán, I’m not opening a trial here.”

O’Rourke: “But, people… it’s a legitimate question to ask you because this, you came here to talk about this whole case and why you dropped it. Now for you not to be able to tell me and you’ve dropped the case so the question of a judge doesn’t actually arise.

“I’m just simply asking you to tell me what happened.”

Bailey: “Well actually it does, it actually does, Seán, and I’ll tell you why it does matter. Because I believe in our judicial system in this country and I believe the proper place for that is the Four Courts.”

O’Rourke: “But you’re not going there now.”

Bailey: “And let me tell you why I’m not going there. So due to the unbelievable abuse – I wasn’t able to go home for three days last week because journalists were sitting outside my home. That is an invasion of my privacy and humanity has been crossed.”

O’Rourke: “OK, but just to go back to the bottles.”

Bailey: “Let me just, can I just say this, Seán, to you. Let me be very clear here. As a state, we need to decide who our judicial system is here: is it the media or is it the courts? The media were judge, jury and executioner in a leaked document, a partial leaked document…:

O’Rourke: “Hold on now…”

Bailey: “…that was not finalised.”

O’Rourke: “There were not just the media writing and reporting on it as is their perfect right. There were former senior ministers, including a former Attorney General who spoke about it in the Seanad, Michael McDowell.”

Bailey: “He should know better. It was a live case.”

O’Rourke: “You had [Fianna Fáil leader] Micheál Martin…”

Bailey: “He should know better too, without fact, these people should know better without fact. These are legislators.”

O’Rourke: “But you were an irresistible target now…”

Bailey: “Absolutely…”

O’Rourke: “….Now, what I want to go back to is…”

Bailey: “…hands up to that.”

O’Rourke: “How can you sit on a swing and hold bottles in your hand and presume you won’t fall?”

Bailey: “Seán, I was injured, I am the one who suffered an injury. I never claimed for compensation. The hotel agreed to pay my medical expenses. I ended up in A&E the next morning. Nobody else got hurt here, except me. I never said I stopped living. I never said I stopped walking.”

O’Rourke: “Explain one thing to me…”

Bailey: “And it’s not my attitude. Three weeks later, I went through intensive physio for three weeks and as somebody, it’s well documented that I am an avid runner, it is well documented out there, I’ve never hidden from that. And running is a cornerstone of my general well-being and keeping me medicated to offset cluster migraines. I went through intensive physio and like any athlete, I wanted to dip my toe into the water, to see if I could do it.

“Now I paid the price for it that night and I regretted doing it and I had to go through…”

O’Rourke: “So you’re confirming that, within three of weeks of this happening…”

Bailey: “I never denied that, I put that on my social media…”

O’Rourke: “But, first of all, sorry clarify one thing: the date on which this happened because…”

Bailey: “The date is wrong in the affidavit and I have instructed my solicitors to correct that.”

O’Rourke: “OK, so it was actually the 10th of July and not on the 13th.”

Bailey: “The Friday, yeah.”

O’Rourke: “OK, so you, three weeks later, after intensive physio, you ran in a 10km.”

Bailey: “..and pain medication.”

O’Rourke: “And ran a good time. But is it not the case that, in your statement of claim, you said that you weren’t able to do any running for three months?”

Bailey: “No, sorry yes, it is in the claim and that is wrong because, and I’ve instructed my, and this, you see, this is where it’s dangerous – when you cross legal documents at an early stage, the plaintiff has every right to amend those particulars prior to it going to a judge and a judge can adjudicate in due course on that.”

“So I was the one who put it on my social media. I had nothing to hide here.”

O’Rourke: “Indeed.”

Bailey: “Seán, you know me as somebody who’s upfront and with integrity.”

O’Rourke: “But just tell me aswell, I mean you were at a festival, a music festival within a week of this happening?”

Bailey: “I went to Marlay Park with my friends and I sat on the grass and I watched a band and I left and I went home. I never said I locked myself away in a monastery. Like this is a joke. You know, I had to lock myself away for three days this week and couldn’t go home. I am a public figure and I accept I am held to a higher standard. I fully accept that.

“But I also expect due process.”

O’Rourke: “Of course. Tell me this much, Maria Bailey. In what way do you believe the hotel was negligent in this?”

Bailey: “Seán, that would have been for a judge to adjudicate, that is not for you or me, that would have been…”

O’Rourke: “I just want you to tell me, I want you to explain to me…”

Bailey: “Sean I’m not a legal person, I took legal advice on this and I put every faith into that legal system and I was told I had a clear-cut case.”

O’Rourke: “Do you believe the hotel should have had a supervisor there?”

Bailey: “Sean, that legal case was put forward, right, that’s what you do when you put forward a case. What I’m saying to you is, I asked a number of months back ‘do you know what, is this worth the hassle, is it worth the hassle?’ because to be honest I just want to get on with my life …

O’Rourke: “I know but…”

Bailey: “I was told ‘you have nothing to fear’, and I distinctly asked ‘when will this information become public?’ so I can prepare myself for it being out there.

“And I was told ‘this will not be public until you are before the courts’ and I was perfectly fine with that.”

O’Rourke: “But why have a supervisor at a swing?”

Bailey: “Seán that is a legal…look, this is Michael McDowell being ridiculous here. This case was a live case, he was being sub judice, and he should have known better.”

O’Rourke: “The fact is, though, it’s out there, it’s out there now.”

Bailey: But it’s out there … can we roll this back? Can we roll this back a little bit here? In my 15 years elected, one week, one week of my career, somebody has tried to character assassinate me and my family and the invasion of privacy that I have had, and they’re trying to negate all the good work that I have done. I am so passionate about my job I am not bowing down to keyboard warriors and bullies.”

O’Rourke: “But it’s not just keyboard warriors, you have brought this on your own head.”

Bailey: “Seán, I did nothing wrong, I am fully entitled, if I was injured, to bring a legitimate case.”

O’Rourke: “If you have filed court documents suggesting that you weren’t able to run for instance for three months…”

Bailey: “They have been amended, Seán…”

O’Rourke: “…and it turns out you have been running within three weeks and running a pretty good time.”

Bailey: “Yeah, well, not for me, but…”

O’Rourke: “This raises questions in the public mind, presumably, you know, you had some input into, into the, you gave information to the legal advisers.”

Bailey: You’re filling out an affidavit three years after the incident, Seán, right? And you do that with the best of intentions, but you know that prior to that going before the judge that you can amend that affidavit. This was a deliberate leak to cause maximum damage. I’m not quite sure was it to me or to the wider party. I’m still evaluating that.”

O’Rourke: “That well may be the case, but the question also has to be asked: was this a deliberate attempt on your part to get money to which the validity of the claim was dubious…”

Bailey: “Seán, Seán, it was my medical expenses that are verified, you’re only talking, €6,000 – €7,000 here. I’ve absorbed those costs already.”

O’Rourke: “Do you have private medical insurance?”

Bailey: “Yes, I do.”

O’Rourke: “So why get the hotel to pay those medical expenses?”

Bailey: “Because the hotel offered to pay and your private medical doesn’t cover your entire medical costs. Everybody knows…Seán, look, I don’t doubt myself. I know exactly who I am. OK? I have always been somebody who shoots straight, who plays on a level playing field here. I had a legitimate case and a judge would have adjudicated on that.”

“What I and my family have been subjected to is incredible, the distress, the abuse, I had to come off all social media.”

“I couldn’t drop my kids to school even though I had great support and that, because I didn’t want to bring attention on myself. I had to lock myself away and work from home this week with the exception of going into the Oireachtas to do my job.”

“The media, and one in particular, have crossed the line of humanity and invasion here, and I’m a public figure, my family are not.”

O’Rourke: “That’s the reason why, for instance, you are a public figure. You had the chance to stand up and be a bigger person and say…”

Bailey: “Seán, I was hurt … I was genuinely hurt. Like anybody with back injury knows, anybody with a back injury knows – you can be fine for a while, you can sneeze or you can get out of bed the wrong way, and your back is sore, it is a constant management of back. And I absolutely am regimental with that.”

O’Rourke: “And nobody is questioning whether you were hurt or not, the question is: where does the responsibility lie for that?”

Bailey: “A judge, a judge. Our judicial system is in the Four Courts. It is not judge, jury and execution by the media. Who are journalists accountable to? I am accountable to the people, they will make their own decision. But who are journalists accountable to?”

O’Rourke: “Coming right up to yesterday, the Taoiseach said on the This Week programme, Leo Varadkar, your party leader, that you had done the party reputational damage as a result of the publicity surrounding this case in the run-up to the election. What do you say to that?”

Bailey: “I think yesterday was a big day for a lot of people and a very tough day for people who weren’t elected. I stand firm in the belief that I take responsibility in the sense that my name was on this case.”

“I don’t take responsibility that three weeks prior to this being leaked that this wasn’t a deliberate attempt to have massive impact in the last week of the election on this party.”

“Yesterday and the day before, the Greens did absolutely well, a clear message was sent to us to act faster on this issue [climate emergency]. In my own constituency we retained the seats that we have. In my own constituency.”

O’Rourke: “So are you saying you didn’t do the party reputational damage?”

Bailey: “No, I didn’t say that. What he said was it would be hard to quantify. Seán I am a long time in politics. I looked at the exit polls, and the main reason that people vote for local politicians in local elections, not normally really national issues, but in this case partially it was, it was on meeting the candidate.

“It was on their work ethic, it was on what they were going to deliver for their community. They were the main reason why people voted for their local candidates.”

O’Rourke: “Well, that’s true but there are two things cited where Fine Gael were concerned – one is your situation, the other is the comment by the Minister for Housing Eoghan Murphy, where he said people would be ‘excited’ at the idea of shared living and that appears not to have gone down well. But can I ask you this: It’s reported in the Independent, which broke this story last week…”

Bailey: “Yeah, same journalist…”

O’Rourke: “It’s understood Mr Varadkar is minded to refer the episode to Fine Gael’s executive council which has the power to expel you from the party for a period of time…”

Bailey: “Yeah, like I mean, after the week I’ve had I’m loathe to believe what I read in the paper.”

O’Rourke: “But nothing has been contradicted about what was in the paper.”

Bailey: Sorry, it’s been taken out of context. And without my side of the story because they knew I couldn’t talk about it. That is not a level playing field. That’s an injustice.”

O’Rourke: “But you can talk about now because you dropped the case but still you won’t give us the detail though on what exactly happened – were you holding two bottles?”

Bailey: “Seán, I am not doing trial by media over the airwaves here.”

O’Rourke: “No I just asked you to tell your story.”

Bailey: “I have done nothing wrong here. Seán…”

O’Rourke: “I’m not saying you did anything wrong…”

Bailey: “Seán, I was hurt. I was hurt. And I am a citizen of this State too.”

O’Rourke: “But what about the fact, that of all the issues – aside from housing and waiting lists – insurance is a hot political potato, we’ve had people sitting in this exact seat in which you’re sitting now Maria Bailey who have been at their wits end, on the verge of tears and sometimes beyond that, at the kind of challenge they’re faced with, the bills they’re getting because of the compensation culture.”

Bailey: “That’s because of fraudulent cases, Seán. Mine wasn’t. Don’t muddy the waters here. Mine was legitimate. I took clear legal advice on this. I am not a legal expert. I followed the legal advice that I got.”

O’Rourke: “Did you go to the current Minister for Culture Josepha Madigan about this? Neither you, nor she were members of the Dáil at the time. Was she involved in advising you in any way?”

Bailey: “I don’t see any reason in answering a question like that. That has nothing to do with this now. This case is gone, this case is dropped. I was with Madigan Solicitors.”

O’Rourke: “And was she involved in advising you?”

Bailey: “I’m not going to get into that Seán.”

O’Rourke: “We need to say again that the hotel denies any liability in this case. It’s not going to be judged now but over all it’s clear that you feel hurt, you feel aggrieved …

Bailey: “No, Seán, what I really feel here is, I have worked so hard for my career, I am a working parent of two children, that balances work and home life. I am representative of today’s society in a changing world. I have a clear voice and a clear mandate in Leinster House that I want to fulfil my role.”

O’Rourke: “What about the people who say you might not be fit to represent Fine Gael, because it’s a party of integrity, a party of doing the right thing.”

Bailey: :Can I be really clear on this, because there is a silver lining to this, I am very clear who I am as a person.”

“I am very clear what my values are, and I am very clear in being an honest person and I stand over that. But the silver lining to this for me and I have been reflecting on it, on an incredibly tough week that I now want to put behind me and move on and get on to what I want to do, especially around regulating home care and things like that, is I have learned a huge amount about me, about dealing with adversity, about media, social media, the impact that it has on public opinion, on people’s mental health, on their wellbeing, but most of all I’ve learnt a lot about people.

“And I will be reflecting on that. But I am a strong female politician, and some people don’t like that.

“And I will not bow down or be bullied by words that are in print that I didn’t have a balanced debate on because it was a live case and I will not be bullied by keyboard warriors.”

O’Rourke: “Are you fearful about having to meet the Taoiseach and having to explain all this to him?”

Bailey: “Absolutely not. Clearly not.”

O’Rourke: ” Do you think you might be thrown out by the executive council or suspended?”

Bailey: “Absolutely not. No I don’t Sean. Look, the Taoiseach knows me as somebody who’s hard working and integral [sic] and I see the Taoiseach on a regular basis, right, and I go to him all the time with policies and if he looks to meet me this week, brilliant, I will use that opportunity to come forward with my proposals about regulating home care, affordable housing and other areas that I’m looking at.”

O’Rourke: “Were you not at least naive in thinking it could stay private.”

Bailey: “Possibly I was, possibly I was, Seán.”

O’Rourke: “Finally, how do you move on from this?”

Bailey: “I am drawing a line in the sand on this today, and I am moving on, I am back in the Oireachtas tomorrow I have a really busy week. I have the Minister for Housing is coming in around Rebuilding Ireland. I chair the Committee of Chairs with the Taoiseach coming into meet the chairs, and I put my head down and I work.”

O’Rourke: “Maria Bailey Fine Gael TD for Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown, thank you.”

Bailey:Thank you, Seán.”

Earlier: A Limerick A Day

164 thoughts on “‘I Found Myself On The Floor’

  1. Jonner

    deserves everything she gets, except perhaps the €160k out of court settlement she is alleged to have received from Aer Lingus following a separate claim.

  2. martco

    the spin machine is @15,000rpm here

    was apparently a slot on Marian also yesterday where the goons defended her and her right to her good name blah blah

    ridiculous nonsense

  3. eoin

    What’s missing so far in much of this is the role Josepha Madigan, the FG culture minister played in this debacle.
    It was Josepha’s small firm of solicitors which represented Maria Bailey. When asked this morning if Josepha Madigan herself had advised her on her claim, Maria Bailey refused to comment (you’d think if Josepha herself wasn’t personally involved, Maria would be keen to make it clear that her FG colleague wasn’t involved).

    So, you have a dodgy (the false claim about the running) claim for compo by a FG TD seemingly legally advised by her FG TD/minister colleague. And we’re supposed to believe FG is serious about tackling the scourge of insurance costs on small Irish business….

    1. Toe Up

      +1 Sean O’Rourke did try to raise that point in fairness, but she ignored it completely.

      She came across really poorly in this interview. If her goal was to improve her standing in the court of public opinion, then she failed miserably on that front.

    2. Owen C

      Given that Josepha has not been involved in the law firm for around two years now, its unlikely that she’s the one behind the advice (albeit she may have been involved in opening up the initial relationship/taking on of the case)

      1. Col

        The incident was July 2015. So Ms. Madigan could have been providing advice.
        Complete conjecture, but possible.

  4. GuessWho

    Why would she be entitled to get her medical bills paid when it clearly was her fault that she fell off the swing?

    No mention of the fact that she lied when she said she couldn’t run for three months?

    1. Dar

      The hotel sent her a cheque for her medical bills, which she returned to them by post! Hope Sean addressed this up in the interview

      1. Cian

        I believe it was a cheque for €600; her medical bills ran to the thousands.

        She should have “held on” to the cheque.

  5. Hank

    Haha, whoever advised her it was a good idea to do that interview really wasn’t on her side.

    Were you holding items in both hands?
    That would be a matter for a judge Sean.
    Priceless!

  6. Brother Barnabas

    fupping ouch

    she;ll be lashing in another claim for that car crash of an interview

    1. Spaghetti Hoop

      Ha! Probably another claim for ‘loss of income’ when she’s suspended from office.

  7. Vanessa the Holy Face of Frilly Keane

    You know the overall tone of that interview was one of
    How very dare you

    She really got the hump with SO’R for questioning her like that
    Didn’t she?

    Someone in Fine Gael is definitely out to put manners on her
    No way would the Indo
    And SO’R have gone this far without being given the go ahead

    Who do we think?
    Leo himself?
    Perry Trone?

  8. David

    Her repeated use of the interviewer’s first name (“Listen Sean”… “Hold on Sean”… “As I said Sean”…) is skin-crawling.

    1. Bertie Theodore Alphege Blenkinsop

      Johnny Giles is an awful man for doing that, once you notice it it’s very annoying.

      1. Brother Barnabas

        the annoyance was worth it for the regular amusement every time he called daragh maloney “bill”

      2. millie st murderlark

        I wish you hadn’t pointed that out. I like John Giles, and if you have ruined him for me…

        1. Col

          I think he’s a gent and probably wants to be polite by using the interviewer’s name. That’s the impression I get from him anyway.
          I met him once through work and he was very polite and attentive to everyone who wanted to talk to him. Anyone who spoke to him got a “Thank you Millie… very nice to meet you Millie… all the best Millie”. Fair play to him.

          1. millie st murderlark

            I adore him for that reason. He strikes me as a true gentleman. Reminds me of my much loved grandad.

    2. eoin

      “Sean, you know I’m a person with integrity, a straight shooter, a person who always plays on a level playing field”
      “Sean, you know I’m not a person who goes out a lot and prefers to curl up on the couch in my pyjamas”

      Sean seems to know a lot about Maria. Or maybe these are just more mistaken claims on Maria’s part.

    1. dav

      Also if she only wanted the e7k why didn’t she go to the District court (who deal with claims up to e15k) and instead she goes to the High Court (who start at e15k upwards)

      1. Joe

        Also, is it not likely she’d have health insurance so where does the 7k come from. Speculating, but you’d wonder.

  9. Emily Dickinson

    Haven’t followed this too closely because there’s obviously a lot of politics being played. But if, as posted here, the deputy swore an affidavit that she couldn’t run for three months while, in reality, she was taking part in a 10k road race, then she could be in quite a lot of bother.

    1. Owen C

      Verifying affidavits aren’t sworn. You can freely change them, so its in the “deeply embarrassing” rather than “legally problematic” realm.

        1. Johnny

          Take your time Owen (apols Eoin) it all sounded so authoritative-had look up the actual court approved doc as I was hm-oh and have a great day :)

      1. Barry the Hatchet

        That’s not correct, Owen. Verifying Affidavits are indeed sworn (what would be the point of an Affidavit that wasn’t sworn??) and cannot be changed.

        1. Owen C

          Apols, you’re right, but this does not even appear to be an affidavit. Just a personal injuries claim. Which is amendable (as is the defence to it).

          1. Barry the Hatchet

            Owen, a Plaintiff in a personal injuries claim has to issue a Personal Injuries Summons setting out what happened, what’s wrong with them and why it’s the other party’s fault. The Plaintiff then has to swear an Affidavit verifying that everything in the Personal Injuries Summons is correct. The summons can be amended, but only on application to the court and only with a good reason.

          2. Owen C

            Yes, so originally saying it was 3 months before she could run again and then amending that to “actually i was really about 1 month” doesn’t seem like the most outrageous (1 year vs 3 years would be perhaps) amendment, particularly given the 4 year gap.

            Don’t get me wrong – she’s an idiot who will get everything she deserves, but it doesn’t seem likely that a fraud (she did fall, she did injure herself) or perjury-style claim (nothing appears to be sworn yet) is going to be the outcome. This is about political career destruction and little else.

          3. Johnny

            Just stop Owen,the spinning is worse than Soul Cycle-all your now doing is appearing to be an even bigger dope.
            Your wrong again,move on.

          4. Owen C

            But this isn’t a verifying affidavit is it?

            “Gráinne Berkery BL, for Holtend Limited, trading as the Dean Hotel, told the registrar that on consent Ms Bailey had six weeks to file an affidavit of discovery”

          5. Barry the Hatchet

            Owen, you literally don’t have a clue what you’re talking about. She made a claim, the claim was verified on affidavit, the claim turned out to be false. Therefore this is not just embarrassing for her (as you suggest), it is in fact legally problematic.

          6. Barry the Hatchet

            AN AFFIDAVIT OF DISCOVERY IS DIFFERENT TO THE VERIFYING AFFIDAVIT. They are two separate and unrelated documents. Please stop trying to out-lawyer a lawyer.

          7. Owen C

            Barry, i have a simple question – where is there any mention of her filing an affidavit or submitting sworn testimony? There’s lots of mentions of her filing a claim/endorsement of claim and a defence being counter filed by the Dean (and very specific language around all of these). But nothing about an affidavit or sworn testimony.

      2. gorugeen

        My live in Barrister had great laugh at this. “An unsworn affidavit is a just piece of paper with writing on it”.

        1. Johnny

          The reason this is so important is it may go to the whole “insurance fraud” issue-people are rarely charged / convicted of “perjury”.
          But they frequently are charged and convicted of fraud-knowingly making a false (sworn)statement to financially benefit in court proceedings,often leads to FRUAD charges.

  10. Owen C

    The most horrendous part of the interview was surely her reference to being brought up on the side of a GAA pitch and therefore not playing offside. There is no offside in GAA. Huge if true.

    1. scottser

      brought up on the side of a gaa pitch while the da was ‘managing’ the hurling team?

      Dublin hurlers’ revolt

      In June 2005, Humphrey Kelleher was removed as manager of the Dublin hurling team, following their defeat by Laois. John Bailey was appointed interim manager. The players, however, refused to train under John Bailey and issued a joint public statement claiming that they felt intimidated after he had threatened them with being barred for life from playing for Dublin should they refuse to accept his management. Bailey had previously denied on radio that he had made this threat.[5]. Tommy Naughton was appointed shortly afterwards to be the new team manager, defusing the row.[6][permanent dead link]

  11. Dr.Fart MD

    1: classic FGer reaction; “I did something bad but you are all the baddies for talking about it. I deserve privacy when embroiled in skullduggery”
    2: “i just wanted the 7k medical bills covered” but you sued for 60k and when you went to the doctors and did scans they found nothing more than a graze.
    3. Really don’t worry about it, Maria. Look at election results, people either don’t remember politicians doing bad stuff or they don’t care. this will not effect you.

    1. Cian

      #2 did she? I think the 60K is the maximum for that court. So it was reported as “up to €60,000”.

  12. Bruce Wee

    I thought she would have amazing balance with sitting on her high horse, Amazed she fell.

    Also….”SEAN!!!!”

  13. Termagant

    “She said she went to A hospital emergency department”

    Very important A there, on account of she didn’t go to Michael’s, she didn’t even go to Vincent’s, because those are poor peoples’ hospitals. She of course went to the Beacon.

    1. eoin

      Yes, and she went the next morning. Which fortuitously allowed whatever alcohol she’d consumed to pass through her system.

  14. Barry the Hatchet

    She says (several times) she was not looking for compensation. I am 99.9% certain this is a lie. I have never once in my career seen a personal injuries case in which the Plaintiff was looking only for medical expenses and not compensation for their injury.

    She says the case was at “the very early stage” of exchanging discovery documents. Discovery does not happen at an early stage. It is one of the last things to happen before the trial.

    She says her Statement of Claim was incorrect (when it said she couldn’t run for 3 months) but that’s okay because sure it was at a very early stage and the Plaintiff is always entitled to amend things. This is incorrect. The Plaintiff is entitled to update their pleadings with new information, but not to materially alter something that is already pleaded without good reason. She would have sworn an Affidavit confirming that the contents of that Statement of Claim was correct. It wasn’t correct. So she lied to the court.

    She says you can amend the Affidavit before going before a judge. This is also completely incorrect.

    Saying you’re an honest person is not very meaningful, particularly after you’ve been caught out in a lie.

  15. Barry the Hatchet

    According to the Irish Times, Simon Harris has just said “I think it was an unfortunate interview. I think when you withdraw a claim, that in and of itself is an acknowledgement of the fact perhaps that the claim should not have proceeded. Yet the interview still very much seemed to be in the space of blaming lots of other people.”

    1. Brother Barnabas

      brilliant!

      he also said it was a “regrettable” decision that she did the interview before talking to varadkar, knowing that he intends talking to her etc, and that she took the decision “on her own volition” and shouldn’t have

      and then he finished with “but this has obviously been a very stressful experience for maria and her family, and I don’t want to say anything that might add to that”

      https://www.irishtimes.com/news/politics/an-unfortunate-interview-simon-harris-on-maria-bailey-radio-appearance-1.3905722

    2. Spud

      Is it true he’s a cousin of her’s also?

      This is just all so entertaining. I never thought as a child growing up politics and news could be so much fun!

      Rumour has it the Diageo Marketing team will get Baileys Cream to sponsor the now infamous swings and put ads on the floor:

      Bailey’s – For when you need a pick-me-up

  16. Catherine costelloe

    I just saw on the news the swing she fell from. I’m surprised health & safety allowed them . An accident waiting to happen. A gentle swing backwards and straight into a wooden wall. She surely cracked her head…..even if she was half cracked herself.
    Mickey Noonan on it would bring the whole ceiling & beam down.

    1. Spud

      Aren’t stairs an ‘accident waiting to happen’ on this logic?
      A gentle fall forward or backwards, and you’d injury yourself badly.

      1. millie st murderlark

        I did, legitimately, do myself an injury before, by falling down two steps in my own house.

        A bruised pelvis and inflamed sciatica because I’m an idiot and missed a step. I sued that stair for all it was worth, mind you.

        1. Spud

          Did you hold the hand rail, or did you have a beer and were reaching for a bottle at the time?

          1. millie st murderlark

            I had a cask of vino in one hand and my sense of joi de vivre in the other. I have only myself to blame.

        2. scottser

          I fell down the last few steps at stupid o’clock in the morning going down to the childer. Cracked the jaysus big toe off meself. It’s now set at a rather jaunty angle. Id love to show Bertie, if I ever meet him in person.

      2. ReproBertie

        Stairs are lethal. Worldwide, only automobiles outscore stairs on the accident scale.

      3. Catherine costelloe

        The wall behind the swing seemed to be 2/3 feet distance away = more of a decorative feature in an enclosed space? So logically remove two steps of the stairs and send your grandmother down in the dark in the middle of the night for glass of water!

    2. Spaghetti Hoop

      In fairness, after two wines which Bailey admits to drinking pre-swing, combined with holding an object in each hand (bottle of beer and bottle of wine in this case) while posing for a photo, I think due care and attention might be lacking on the swing as it would be if she was crossing a road or climbing a ladder.

  17. Mart

    I liked how she was quick enough to giver her side of the story when she thought it benefited her

    “Nobody was drunk”

    “We had one glass of wine”

    “The seat is polished wood”

    But any questions about whether she was at fault, such as if she was holding on or had objects in both hands, well they would need to be decided by a judge!

    Delusional.

  18. Ian-O

    My thanks to the German language for the word schadenfreude.

    It’s not often I genuinely get to feel it, but here it is….yummy, yum yum.

    1. Brother Barnabas

      the only thing that would have made this better is if it scuppered her father’s campaign – sadly, he managed to slither over the line

        1. Termagant

          He reared her, she’s partially his fault

          Whoever mammy is she should catch some havoc too

        1. Cian

          Thanks Iwerzon. I didn’t know that.

          Sippenhaft or Sippenhaftung (German: [ˈzɪpənˌhaft(ʊŋ)], kin liability) is a German term for the idea that a family or clan shares the responsibility for a crime or act committed by one of its members,justifying collective punishment. As a legal principle, it was derived from Germanic law in the Middle Ages, usually in the form of fines and compensations.

  19. Emily Dickinson

    Getting a bit of a legal education here.

    Even allowing for the fact that much of the criticism is politically motivated, if she lied in an affidavit, that is serious and, I think, a matter for the party.

    There was a vaguely similar case in the UK a while back where a Labour MP (and solicitor) was kicked out for lying to the authorities. It was a traffic violation rather than a compo claim, but I think the core points around honesty and respect for the legal process come into play.

    The deputy may be in some proper trouble here.

    1. delacaravanio

      An MP went to jail after he and his wife swapped points for a speeding fine.Chris Huhne and Vicki Price both ended up doing time for it.

      1. GiggidyGoo

        The english politicians (when caught) are quick to diffuse the situation by resigning. Never happens here. You have JoeB being chaperoned now from point to point and not taking any questions. She quoted client confidentiality recently as regards Swing Swong. Which means that Swing Swong was a client of hers? So paws still in the business. Double JoeB

  20. Spaghetti Hoop

    Just curious, has any broadcaster invited a representative from The Dean on yet? For balance and all that. BALANCE, wha?

    1. Spud

      Bailey herself has been trying to call the hotel legal team, but each time the receptionist says ‘hold on for just a moment’…

  21. Ron

    Political sillies will always be political sillies. A leopard never changes its spots. The only thing she regrets is getting caught. But like Lowry in Tipp, the electorate will most likely re elect her. Considering thousands of Dubs decided to give Maurice Mc Cabe a big middle finger by giving Frances Fitzgerald a Number 1 vote tells me everything we need to know about how Ireland works and which way their moral compass points.

    Insurance cheats cheat us all.. isn’t that the mantra indeed.

  22. Boj

    This story is getting just enough attention for it to tip over into victimhood for Bailey. Then next week, we’ll be talking about internet censorship after the sinister fringe send death threats or some ball-cox like that.

    1. martco

      oh it’s there already
      caught in the car with Yates on the radio as herself wanted to get the latest…now it’s all OTT social media commentary & she’s a human being & she’s a young mother yadayadayada

      this has legs

      the stunt she tried to pull is plain & obvious & it’s backfired badly.

      I have no sympathy of any kind whatsoever.

      I know from an old business venture what that kind of speculative false civil court threat is like to deal with made by a legal smartarsed spoofer. you can’t help but take it personally certainly didn’t sleep well for a while (and we had cctv the works in our favour)

      I personally hope the Dean go for her, she & the party of “welfare cheats cheat us all” deserve the ridicule.

      1. GiggidyGoo

        Ah Yates. Yes. Off to Wales (but back regularly on the ferry) to get himself declared bankrupt. Lands a job with Moosetalk. To top up his pension, that we pay for. Then himself and the missus do the same for another year, so she’s let off the hook. (Did I say Hook?)
        Fine Gael cheat us all.

  23. Manta Rae

    She had to go to reception for a plaster. She has suffered enough. Leave the poor woman alone…

  24. HoneyPot

    Work as a legal secretary. Not uncommon to see the same clients with several personal injury claims over their lifetime.

    1. millie st murderlark

      Massive plus one from me.

      I’ve seen it myself. It’s like they’re addicted to the victim thing. You can always tell the messers from one off claims.

  25. deluded

    It’s a ropey looking swing, though :
    https://images.app.goo.gl/zN2HLZYDueGrYz6W9
    (I see this has occurred to others too)
    Light furniture or moving supports would be a no-no in my book for a drinking establishment. Some people get a little unstable with drink, “tipsy” even.
    (Benches and tables are the job, nothing you could swing at somebody in a fight).
    She fell on her bum and everyone laughed, is how I imagine this volcano of rage and retribution was unleashed.
    Well nobody’s laughing now Maria.

  26. Vanessa the Holy Face of Frilly Keane

    Hate ta have t’ ask this
    But lads

    See that pic there of herself in all the lycra
    Are her shoulders back deliberately
    Ya know
    To enhance a pair of things

    1. millie st murderlark

      Yep. Oh boy yep. No one has posture like that naturally.

      And as a woman to woman thing, I’m not wild on her leggings.

      1. Janet, I ate my avatar

        never a fan of the three quarter leg, it’s not flattering, go micro or long

    2. realPolithicks

      You’re right there Vanessa, sure you can practically see the whites of her eyes.

  27. Emily Dickinson

    Current line from the camp seems to be that she lied but that the real scandal is that the other side revealed this to the press. Hardly the best defence in the world.

    Also, can’t help observing that’s there quite a difference between not being able to run and taking part in a 10K road race. That’s not just a minor mix up in dates.

    The only point in her favour is that if she weren’t a TD she would have already walked away with €50,000. Which goes to show what a messed up civil injuries regime we have in this country.

  28. eoin

    Can anyone help with this puzzler

    Maria says ” I had decided myself that I was going to withdraw the case because I didn’t want to be a distraction and I was advised, and rightly advised, that that would be seen as a cynical move the week of the local elections.”

    Reports that she had dropped the case emerged at 5pm on Friday.

    The busiest time at most polling stations is 5pm – 8pm.

    So, why did she drop the case at the busiest time and wouldn’t that have been seen as maximum cynicism?

    Anyone?

  29. SOQ

    Maria is pretty much articulating the FFG risk management strategy. Swing higher and higher until they hit a brick wall.

    Then- take legal action against the brick wall.

  30. the bottler

    Any contribution yet from Kenneth Murphy (Law Society) not likely. The blood suckers will lie low for a while!

  31. Peter

    Tell her to mind herself, she may take a tumble on the wet ground if she’s not careful.

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