Fine Gael TD David Stanton announces he will not seek re-election

Cork East deputy becomes fifth senior Fine Gael TD to announce departure in recent months

The Fine Gael TD David Stanton, who has held the Cork East seat for the party in every general election for more than a quarter of a century, has announced that he will not seek re-election.

He becomes the fifth Fine Gael TD to announce his departure in recent months, leaving the party with the task of finding replacement candidates before a general that could come next year.

Mr Stanton, a respected figure among colleagues and popular across party lines in Leinster House, was first elected in at the 1997 general election and held the seat in each of the five elections since then. He served as a junior minister at the Department of Justice during the 2016-20 Fine Gael-led Government, with responsibility for integration and equality.

He announced his departure at a local party meeting on Monday night, having previously notified the party leadership of his intentions.


In a statement issued tonight, Mr Stanton said: “It has been the utmost privilege of mine to have represented the constituents of Cork East since my first General Election in 1997 and at the five subsequent elections. I will continue to work for my constituents in the same manner until the next General Election.”

“A highlight of my career was being appointed Minister of State at the Department of Justice and Equality with special responsibility for Equality, Immigration and Integration in 2016,” he added.

“I would also like to acknowledge all those who have supported me and worked with me in my role as a TD. It has been an absolute privilege to represent the people of Cork East as their public representative.

“My job is only made possible by my loving family. They provided me with great fortitude throughout my time as public representative for which I am eternally grateful.”

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said that Mr Stanton was a “brilliant TD and was an excellent Minister of State for four years”.

“Anyone who has worked alongside David knows he is a true gentleman, and also one of the hardest-working TDs in Fine Gael and in the Oireachtas. There’s never any fuss, just hard work done well and consistently,” he said.

Pat Leahy

Pat Leahy

Pat Leahy is Political Editor of The Irish Times