A GREEN Party candidate for next year’s general election has said that the fourth seat in the Limerick City constituency is “everyone’s to take”.
North Circular Road teacher James Gaffney, who announced his election campaign last week, said that he is “optimistic and realistic” about next year’s campaign, and that he believes that there is “still a valid place for a Green voice” in Irish politics.
He said that he has been involved with the party for more than a year, and that he has always voted for the Green Party.
Mr Gaffney, 31, who is an English teacher in DCU, graduated from UL with a degree in Law and European Studies in 2006. He also attended Ardscoil Rís.
He said that he has “always been interested in local and national politics” and that he wants to “step into the ring to bring about positive changes” for Limerick.
“All schools will have subsidised, healthy dinners for the children, and that in Deis schools the dinners would be for free. And I think that is one of their ideas that has a long-term focus that encourages healthier habits, which will benefit society in the long-term,” he explained.
He said that he is aware that he is up against “national heavyweights” in the constituency, but he is adamant about running a “good campaign”.
“We will be able to take votes from most of the main parties, but we wouldn’t align ourselves with the other parties. But in past elections, we have seen that Fine Gael, Labour and Sinn Féin voters will often gives votes to Green Party candidates as well,” he said.
Mr Gaffney set up his own company two years ago, called English Week, where he teaches English as a foreign language.
He said he does “intensive” week-long courses, as well as short-term contracts with language schools.