1. The “Big Mo” Award: Ireland for Europe/Women for Europe. The Brendan Halligan/Pat Cox led organisation got what Americans call momentum with a constant stream of endorsements and a focus on non-politicians selling the message. It also had in Andrew Byrne an exceptionally talented organiser.
2. The Just Vote F**king Yes Award: Michael O’Leary. He’s a divisive figure, although every small businessman loves the guy for his bluntness. The decision to wade into the battle had an effect on the campaign, and his “Unemployable f**king headbangers” description of the No campaign was probably the most memorable line of the campaign, as was the press conference it was delivered at.
3. The A Lie Too Far Award: Coir’s €1.84 poster, which was such a big and disprovable lie that although it was effective, it allowed the Yes side to lay into them for blatant porkifying.
4. The Just The Facts, Mam Award: The European Movement, who although they did not campaign for a yes or no vote, published the best guide to the treaty, and the tireless Andrea Pappin, who traipsed the country with a well-thumbed copy of the treaty and an inflatable sheep, and got savaged by people on both the Yes and No side for her troubles.
5. The Storm The Barricades Award: Joe Higgins MEP. Unlike the shinners, who were obtuse and seemed to change their opinions on the EU depending on whether they were north or south of Dundalk, and Coir, who just made shit up, Joe argued from a point of principle. Didn’t agree with him, but believed he was sincere. Having said that, if you asked him for the recipe to a really light and fluffy souffle he’d almost certainly demand that a worker’s collective be included.
6. The Here Comes The Cavalry Award: This has to go to UKIP, who assumed that the dumb paddies don’t know anything about British politics. Their intervention almost certainly shifted soft Nos into the Yes camp. The Yes campaign should do the decent thing and pay Nigel Farage’s airfare.
7. The Blitzkrieg Award: Generation Yes, run by Bart Storan and Sharon Waters, was the paramilitary wing of the Yes side, and brought a lot of Full Metal Jacket style energy to the campaign.
8. The Puff Of Purple Smoke And They Were Gone Award: Coir/ Youth Defence. Just who were those mysterious people and their posters and their granny frightening?
9. The Bring Back The Old Days Award: Alive, the Catholic “publication”, and its unbiased “Does the EU want to make it compulsory for you to breed with weasels?” coverage of the treaty.
10. The Jaysus That Could Have Been Me! Award: Iceland, for making a lot of Irish people wake up and realise that, but for an “R” and not vaguely smelling of cod liver oil all the time, that could have been us.