Press Statement - 14th June 2004
Local And Euro Elections:
Important Gains for Socialist Party Overlooked
Joe Higgins T.D. Socialist Party
The disastrous slump in the Fianna Fáil vote and the gains for Sinn Féin in the Local and Euro Elections has led to very important gains for the Socialist Party being overlooked.
Socialist Party candidates topped the poll in Cork North Central, Tallaght Central and Swords, while the combined votes of two Socialist Party candidates in Mulhuddart, was greater than any other Party. All four candidates, Mick Barry, Mick Murphy, Clare Daly and Ruth Coppinger were the first elected in their areas.
The Dublin Euro vote for Socialist Party candidate Joe Higgins T.D. at 23,218 (5.5%), was more than a doubling of the 1999 vote and a very credible result for a small party considering the very slender financial resources we had by contrast with other forces. There were also very credible results in other local electoral areas for the Socialist Party candidates who did not win seats on this occasion.
The Socialist Party will now consolidate its base in all areas where it is active and extend into others and will be serious challengers for a number of Dáil seats in the next General Election.
Privatisation and Bin Tax- Key Issues in Dublin Now.
The results in the Local Election in Dublin means that the bin tax will re-emerge as a key issue. It is quite clear that the massive fight against the stealth tax last autumn was an important factor in the overall election results.
The attempted privatisation of Dublin bus routes and the break up of Aer Rianta can now be resisted with greater confidence by the thousands of workers involved. Facing a ragged Government, workers can now mobilise to defeat the reactionary thrust by Fianna Fáil/ Progressive Democrats towards privatisation of public services.