Paschal Donohoe (41) is the current Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport having been elected a TD for the first time in the 2011 General Election. He ran unsuccessfully as a Fine Gael candidate in the Dublin Central bye-election in 2009 following the death of Tony Gregory, but subsequently topped the poll in 2011. He has previously held the role of Minister for European Affairs and served as a Senator between 2007-11. Mr Donohoe is married with two young children
On the Ballot
Joe Costello (70) is a long time Labour TD and served as the Minister for Trade and Development before the office was abolished in 2014. He was a Dublin Central TD between 1992-97 before he lost his Dail seat in the 1997 General Election. Mr Costello would regain the seat in the 2002 General Election and has held it since. He also served two terms as a Senator from 1989 to 1992 and from 1997-2002. Mr Costello’s wife Emer Costello is a former MEP for Dublin.
Mary Lou McDonald (46) was elected a TD for the first time in 2011 in the Dublin Central constituency having run unsuccessfully in both the 2002 and 2007 General Elections. She is the current Vice President of Sinn Féin and acts as the party’s spokesperson on Public Expenditure and Reform. She served as a MEP for Dublin for five years from 2004 until 2009. Mary Lou McDonald and her husband Martin have two young children.
Maureen O’Sullivan (64) is an independent candidate running in the Dublin Central constituency. She was first elected in the 2009 bye-election following the death of long-time TD Tony Gregory. She retained her seat in the 2011 General Election. Prior to entering politics she was a teacher for 30 years and was a guidance counsellor for a time too.
Elected to Dublin City Council in 2014 as an Independent, Éilis Ryan (31) later joined the Workers Party after it was re-organised at the start of 2015. The 31-year-old is against the water charges and wishes to see an immediate investment in the building of social housing. An advocate for rent control, she is campaigning for greater security for tenants. Among her priorities is a commitment to greater transparency around how Government resources are allocated.
Sole Fianna Fáil candidate in Dublin Central, Mary Fitzpatrick is a former member of Dublin City Council having been co-opted for Cabra-Glasnevin in 2003 to replace her father, Dermot Fitzpatrick. She unsuccessfully contested the last two general elections, failing in 2007 to take the seat held by her father following his retirement from politics. Ms Fitzpatrick is focused on the areas of housing, employment, transport, crime and opposes the property tax.
Social Democrats’ candidate Gary Gannon (28) was elected as an Independent to Dublin City Council in 2014 on his first attempt. The 28-year-old has worked as a career guidance advocate for early school leavers and currently sits on the Dublin City Joint Policing Committee. Raised in North Inner City Dublin, he lists his number one priority for the constituency as education reform, including increased funding for educational grants and bursaries, reduction in third level registration fees, and greater support for university access programmes.
Activist Diana O'Dwyer (37) is the Anti Austerity Alliance candidate for Dublin Central. A committed socialist and advocate for women's rights, this is Ms O’Dwyer’s first time running for election. She is campaigning on a number of issues, including the repeal the 8th Amendment, rent control, minimum wage increase, and the abolish of water charges.
Former Lord Mayor of Dublin Christy Burke (68) has made several attempts at securing a Dáil seat in Dublin Central. First elected as a councillor for Dublin City Council for Sinn Féin in 1985, he resigned from the party shortly after the 2009 local election. A passionate voice for the capital’s homeless, Cllr Burke is campaigning for the end of temporary accommodation, saying that everyone should be entitled to a permanent home. He was jailed in the 1970s for membership of the Provisional IRA.
Deputy Lord Mayor of Dublin City Council Cieran Perry (53) first took office in 2009. He retained his seat in the 2014 local elections, where he topped the poll in the Cabra/Finglas ward. A campaigner against water charges, he has run unsuccessfully twice for a seat in Dáil Éireann on an anti-austerity platform. This election he is calling for “greater equality” when its comes to housing, health and education.
Standing for the Green Party in Dublin Central, Ian Noel Smyth is running in his first general election following an unsuccessful bid at local government in 2014. An architect by profession, he is campaigning on a platform of housing, renewable energy, and support for local services. A father-of-four, Mr Smyth wants to help small businesses by offering tax relief and reduced rates on water and energy. He also wants to see a programme for Government which helps people understand the benefits of future proofing of their homes.
The current chairperson of Renua's Dublin Central Constituency Board, Jacqui Gilbourne is a first time general election candidate. With a background in nursing and community care, she is campaigning for more support for the elderly and those with old-term medical conditions. Ms Gilbourne also wants to see power returned to local government.
Donnybrook native William Gorman is standing as an Independent for Dublin Bay South and in Dublin Central. Previously he stood as an Independent in the old Dublin South-East constituency in 1997 and polled at 99 first preference votes.
An artist based in Dublin, first time election candidate Kerry Guinan is standing as an Independent for the general election. She is campaigning on a platform that seeks to raise awareness of issues surrounding art workers and wants to see the introducing of a progressive tax system for art workers. A graduate of NCAD, Ms Guinan believes that art is an effective tool in “politicise society”, saying that she would see to encourage schemes that would give those “excluded from art” an outlet to express themselves.
Cormac McKay (35) is a Direct Democracy Ireland candidate. He is contesting his first general election and previously ran unsuccessfully in the 2014 local elections. He is running in two constituencies - Dublin Central and Dublin North-West - on a platform of direct democracy.