Joe Doyle RIP

11th August, 2009

This morning I attended the funeral of the late Joe Doyle. I first met Joe at a constituency meeting in Dublin South East after the 2002 General Election. This election saw Fine Gael lose a seat in a constituency that was traditionally one of the very strongest for us. He spoke strongly at the meeting, emphasising that as a party we needed to go back to our roots and rebuild. It was a passionate and defiant contribution at a time when our party (seemed at least) to be on the brink of extinction.

I met Joe again in the 2007 General Election when he and his colleague and friend Fergus O’Brien arrived to canvass for me in that election. He had such a nose for politics. He said to me that I doing well but that Bertie Ahern could get an amazing number of votes. How right he turned out to be.

I had such respect and affection for the man. His principles and decency were clear within minutes of meeting him. During the 1980s when he could have caused huge difficulty to Garret Fitzgerald he always put national interests ahead of his own personal views. In many ways he is the kind of politician that we need now. He had a very successful career in politics, but I think that his proudest moment was probably to serve his city as Lord Mayor.

My condolences go out to his family and friends.

Joe Doyle, former councillor, Lord Mayor, Senator and TD – Rest in Peace.