Why TD Mick should thank the Lord for NAMA 09/10/15 : the chronicle.ie

Why TD Mick should thank the Lord for NAMA 09/10/15

| October 9, 2015

TD Mick Wallace should be taking to his knees every morning and praising the Lord for those who created NAMA. Given that he is one of the greatest critics of the State Body it might seem odd to suggest that he should be doing anything in support of it.

But in reality Wallace owes almost everything to NAMA. It’s an unpopular organisation because in the public mind it is associated with the darkest of dark days in the country when the collapse of the nation’s banks brought everyone close to a state of collapse.

So NAMA was never going to be popular and given the scale of its property portfolio and the level of write downs that were inevitable after the crash a lot of its decision were always going to raise suspicions in the public mind.

In steps Deputy Mick to give voice to that public suspicion and concern. Add the benefit of Dail Privilege, throw in a few additional nuggets of information about large sums of money resting in bank accounts, talk about personal threats and make a few suggestions about cover ups and bingo you are the hero of all those who have a suspicious hatred of NAMA ———and there are many of those people about.

While other TDs are busy trying to get infrastructural projects for the county, or holding clinics and dealing with a range of issues from medical cards to social welfare payments, or dressing up and attending local funerals, the 2011 Wexford poll topper does none of that.

In fact he makes no secret of the fact that if you want your pot holes filled he is not the man for you.

Indeed if you were to carry out research——–as political parties do——–to try and find the best type of candidate for a middle of the road Dail constituency in South Leinster what you would come up with would almost certainly be the direct opposite of Mick Wallace.

First of all take constituency work. He simply doesn’t believe in it. Yet there are those who swear that in a place like Wexford sorting people’s problems and holding clinics is an essential part of being a TD.

Then there is attendance at community gatherings and functions. Being seen around and attending events is a serious priority for most TDs, but it’s not on Mick’s radar at all. In fact he doesn’t even live locally.

Next take social issues and particularly the area of abortion. Wexford has proven to be a relatively conservative place on social issues and most candidates would want to broadly reflect that but Mick makes no bones about his views which are to the extreme left on social issues, favouring, as he does. a woman’s right to choose on the abortion issue.

In a county with close associations to the United States, think JFK and John Barry, TD Mick has actually being hauled before the courts as a result of this illegal protests against the US and generally his focus has been more on international affairs than say on getting road by-passes for Enniscorthy or New Ross.

There are many other areas where Mick Wallace breaks with convention, the most obvious probably being his dress. If you went to any selection meetings of the major parties in this county and suggested that an ideal candidate would be someone who would only ever dress in jeans and tee shirt and never present themselves looking as if they had jumped out of the shower any time lately, you would get short shift.

So basically Mick Wallace is everything a potentially successful Wexford Dail candidate should not be but the consensus is that none of that makes any difference. He is currently the most powerful force in Wexford politics and medical cards or not, pot hotels or not, abortion or not, jeans or not, all pundits believe be the people’s choice to represent Wexford again.

If they are correct———-and few would bet against it————Wallace will have succeeded in turning on its head everything people previously thought were essential ingredients for success in Wexford politics. And NAMA, or at least his criticisms of NAMA, will have played key role in that, which is why the Independent TD could do worse than thank someone for the fact that it was set up in the first place.

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