Tag Archives: Lorraine Clifford-Lee

This morning/afternoon.

Wexford By-Election Count.

Verona Murphy the Fine Gael candidate, with her party’s Director of Elections, Minister for Justice Charlie Flanagan after arriving in the count centre at St Joseph’s Club Community Centre, Bishopswater, Wexford. Mr Flanagan, following the third count (above), declared: “It’s all to play for.”

Eamonn Farrell/RollingNews


This morning/Afternoon.

Dublin Fingal by-election count.

Green Party candidate Joe O’Brien talks to the media (top) as Fianna Fáil Candidate Lorraine Clifford Lee she arrives at the count centre in the National Show Centre,

Quotas yet to be reached as counting continues (RTÉ)

Sam Boal/Rollingnews

This morning.

St Patrick’s National School, Donabate, County Dublin.

Fianna Fáil Senator and controversial Dáil candidate Lorraine Clifford Lee voting with her children – above from left Kitty and Teddy – in  the Dublin Fingal by-election, among four contests taking place around the country today.

Earlier: Graves’ Responsibility

Early turnout low as ballots cast in four by-elections (RTÉ)

Eamonn Farrelll/Rollingnews

Dr Sindy Joyce

Kitty Holland, in The Irish Times, reports:

Traveller activists have criticised Martin Collins, co-director of Pavee Point for accepting an apology from Senator Lorraine Clifford Lee over derogatory tweets she sent eight years ago.

…“I do wonder if she had used the ‘n’ word would she be allowed to continue on in her position. I could accept the apology if it was one or two comments and she was very young but I don’t feel the apology is sincere. I think she’s sorry she got caught.”

Clifford Lee Traveller comments ‘painful’ and apology not sincere, activists say (Kitty Holland, The Irish Times)

Earlier: ‘I Am Truly, Truly Sorry’

Previously: A Day Of Mixed Emotions

This morning.

On RTÉ’s Morning Ireland.

Fianna Fáil Senator Lorraine Clifford-Lee spoke to Carole Colman about her controversial tweets from 2011.

Ms Clifford-Lee is running for a TD seat in the Fingal by-election on November 29.

During the interview, Ms Clifford-Lee said:

“What happened back then was totally inappropriate and wrong and I’m very sorry for offending people. It was many years before I was engaged in electoral politics and in no way reflects my opinion on minority issues.

“My true attitude is reflected in what I’ve done and what I have said since I’ve been in a position to influence things. For example, I robustly offended in the media the families at Cabra Bridge last year, in their dispute with Tipperary County Council.

“I supported the Traveller education bill, the granting of ethnic status to Travellers, the family reunification bill which offered extra rights to undocumented migrant families in Ireland.

“And I also supported marriage equality so I’m truly sorry for the offence that I caused. I think sometimes we say things when we don’t understand the impact of the words that we use.

“I’m meeting Martin Collins [of Pavee Point]. I’ve spoken to him on the phone, I am going to reissue that apology to him in person and I truly hope that my apology is accepted.

“It’s from the bottom of my heart and it’s very heartfelt. And I hope to engage in constructive dialogue with Martin and his colleagues.”

Asked how she felt how the matter “unfolded during the middle of her campaign, she said:

“It obviously was unexpected but, you know, as soon as it emerged, I apologised and I’ve kept apologising and I will continue to apologise because that’s all I can do. I am genuinely very, very sorry.

“It doesn’t reflect who I am. It doesn’t reflect the work that I have engaged in and I know that I have caused offence and I am truly sorry for that offence.”

Asked if she accepts that people, particularly in public life, have to be very careful about how they label other people and other groups, she said:

“Absolutely and it’s something that happened far before I was involved in electoral politics. Nevertheless I understand the impact that the words I used has had on people and I understand the offence that I have caused and I am truly, truly sorry for that offence.”

Asked how she disassociates herself from something that was her own words, she said:

“It was a long time ago and I suppose we all evolve as people and I’m, now I’m a mother, I suppose I have educated myself a lot in relation to minority issues in recent years and yu know people make mistakes and it’s the recognition of those mistakes and it’s how you act.

“And since I have been a public person, that was in a private capacity. Since I have been a public person, I have worked very, very hard in relation to minority issues.”

Asked if there any other tweets or anything on other platforms that may yet emerge, she said:

“I don’t know is a straight answer because you know obviously this was a long time ago, before I was engaged in electoral politics and I’m very, very, very sorry for things I might have said back then.”

Asked for her thoughts, in general, on the value and challenges of diversity, she said:

“Ireland is a more diverse country than we have been in the past and particularly this constituency, it’s very, very diverse. And this constituency is a very young constituency and it’s  a rapidly growing constituency and there’s people coming from all over Dublin, all over Ireland and beyond to live in this constituency.

“I think it’s very important that we put the structures there in place in all our communities that we can all integrate, get to know each other and grow as communities.”

Listen back in full here

Previously: Set In Motion

I’ve Been Smeared


Fine Gael TD Maria Bailey leaving the Royal Marine Hotel in Dun Laoghaire last month


Fine Gael’s national executive is due to meet at the party’s headquarters on Mount Street Upper in Dublin 2.

On the agenda is a motion from the party’s Dún Laoghaire branch calling for a review of the constituency’s general election candidates.

The motion is widely viewed as a move against Maria Bailey, following her decision to sue a Dublin hotel after falling off a swing at the premises.

It reportedly passed 88 in favour and 66 against on October 31 when a vote was taken at the Royal Marine Hotel in Dun Laoghaire.

Previously: 88 In Favour, 66 Against

“I Found Myself On The Floor”



Last night.

Fianna Fáil leader Mícheál Martin released a statement saying Seantor Lorraine Clifford-Lee (above) is “genuinely sorry” for the comments she made on Twitter.

Ms Clifford-Lee is running for a TD seat in the Fingal by-election on November 29.

Mr Martin also said in the statement: “I believe that everyone should get a second chance.”

Rollingnews/Hugh O’Connell