I first heard of Paul Gogarty before he was even elected a county councillor. A guy I worked with was raving about the work this Green party activist was doing in the area, and predicted that he would easily get elected in the locals, and then the general. I thought nothing of it but then he topped the poll in his ward. Then he got elected to the Dail in a 3 seater in 2002, no mean achievement for a Green candidate.
As for ‘effing and blinding, it seemed to be a human response, and in the pubs of Lucan and Clondalkin I suspect he’ll be forgiven. In fact, the po-faced response of some in Fine Gael will probably help him. Gogarty’s problem is that if he’s not careful, he won’t have the word “maverick” attached to him, which is always worth a few votes, but “petulent”, as a guy who has strops and gets in a huff, and that is a very unattractive quality in any person, never mind a TD.
More than any Green politician, Gogarty seems to have struggled with the change in the public’s perception of the Green Party, from the safe default protest party to a party that has had its head kicked in the the electoral car park. He needs to stop protesting, and show his substantial side, perhaps with a calm measured speech as to what a blooded-by-government green party is actually for, and can actually do. There are many of us who have been disappointed by the Green Party but have not given up quite yet, and could be brought into the fold. Gogarty, with a penchant for plain speaking, could yet be the man to do that.