About Me

My Political Profile

My approach to politics has always been based on a series of fundamental principles


That communities both urban and rural, should be actively assisted by the State in improving local quality of life and mutual support of people for each other

Social Justice

That economic development should always be combined with a fair distribution of wealth, opportunities and privileges.

Peace and Reconciliation

That peace on our island will only come through open dialogue and co-operation between all the people of this island and by mutual understanding of each other’s perspectives.

Irish language and culture

That the Irish language should be actively promoted as a living, working language and that all other aspects of Irish culture and heritage should be supported and encouraged.


2011: Re-elected as Teachta Dála
2010: Appointed Minister for Social Protection
2007: Appointed Minister for Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs
2002: Appointed Minister for Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs
2001-2002: Minister of State at the Department of Agriculture, Food & Rural Development, with special responsibility for Rural Development.
1997-2001: Minister of State at the Department of Arts, Heritage, Gaeltacht and Islands with special responsibility for the Gaeltacht, Irish language and island development.
1991-97: Member Galway County Council and of a number of subsidiary Committees
Analysis / Achievements / Anecdotes relating to this period
1995-1997: Party Spokesman for Islands, Gaeltacht and Rural Development
1994-97 Member of the Forum for Peace and Reconciliation.
1992: Elected to Dáil Éireann
1989-92: Elected Senator on the Cultural and Educational Panel.
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