WHILE officially running under the independent banner, Mid-Louth man Thomas Clare is part of the New Vision group which has a number of its representatives involved in campaigns around the country.
He feels this group could have a big future in Irish politics and says he feels he would be a good representative for the group in Dáil Éireann if the people of Louth and East Meath lend him their back.
He said: “I’m the Louth rep of the New Vision group of independents, who are running 19 candidates across the country.
“We are advised by David McWilliams on the economic front and a guy called Constantine on the banking front and I personally have written the group strategy on small business and enterprise which has been my background for many years.
“I did serve on Louth County Council for 10 years and people will be aware that my attitude to public service was about service and never about privilage or money and I’m very proud of that fact.
“At the end of the day people still want to know about jobs, about employment, about enterprise and their future. We’re all worried about our jobs and the sovereign debt but the day will come when the sovereign debt and the banking debt will be separated at source.
“I am an independent but it’s very much part of this group that have very well thought out economic policies. We’re a group largely of small business people with business acumen so we know we can make a difference,” he said.
Clare also stressed the importance of having a TD in the Mid-Louth area.
He said: “We feel in Mid Louth that we’re second class citizens. We suffer from having the two biggest towns in Ireland either side of us but people forget there is 28,000 voters in Mid-Louth. We’ve not had direct representation for the last 30 years where I live which covers Clogherhead, Dunleer, Ardee, Castlebellingham, Kilsaran and Dromiskin and those areas have twice the average rate of unemployment which is unbelievable.”
Clare says he was heartened by a recent Sunday Independent poll which put him just outside the four seats up for grabs in the election and stressed the importance of the next few weeks.
“We feel we’re just within fighting distance but we have put in an incredibly hard slog at the door and we feel this election more than any I’ve ever seen will reward people who stand at doors and engage with people and listen to what they have to say.
“The next two weeks are what will make or break this country.”