People he was in school with always answer the same way: “He’s a what? A member of parliament? HIM??” It’s his gorgeous teeth you first notice, gleaming at you from his poster. The mammies love him on the doorsteps, and the daughters quite fancy a nibble too. He’s a good looking young man, well disposed to all, by all accounts just lovely.
It’s only when you speak to him do you realise that he knows nothing about politics, and isn’t even that interested. You could hand him an opponents’s speech to read and he wouldn’t know the difference. He just loves being well known, and if it wasn’t Dail Eireann it would be The X Factor or playing Buttons in the Gaiety Panto or a boyband. It’s quite possible that’s what he thinks he’s doing anyway.
And yet, you can’t hold it against him. He’s just getting on best as he can. You have to wonder what it says about Irish politics that there are 8500 people who bother to go to the polling station, and so recognise that voting means something, and yet in the polling booth choose the direction society should go in based on whether their chosen candidate is suitable to be freeze-dried and stored behind glass as the emergency backup member of Westlife?