Former Minister and best selling author, Mary O’Rourke, formally launched the General Election South Roscommon canvass campaign of Fianna Fáil Councillor, Orla Leyden, in the surrounds of the Athlone Springs Hotel, on Saturday morning last.
A gathering of Cllr. Leyden’s supporters and friends were present in the hotel in Monksland to hear Mary O’Rourke liken and compare her own political career to that of the General Election aspirant.
Mary O’Rourke is a former Deputy Leader of Fianna Fáil, and was a Government Minister on three occasions, (Education, Health and Public Enterprise ) and is also the best-selling author of several books including her autobiography, ‘Just Mary’.
“I was the same age as Orla is now when I commenced my career in national politics,” the former Minister informed the well attended crowd.
Also in attendance among the gathering at the hotel in Monksland was Cllr. Aengus O’Rourke of Athlone Moate Municipal District, Orla’s father, Senator Terry Leyden and his wife, Mary. Several members of South and mid-Roscommon Fianna Fáil were also at the canvass launch.
Cllr. Leyden thanked the gathering who came to the Athlone Springs Hotel launch in South Roscommon as she talked of the link between herself and Mary O’Rourke, noting that she was happy to be invited to join the General Election race by the Fianna Fáil leader, Micheál Martin.
She reminded those in attendance that it was the late Brian Lenihan Jnr. (then Minister for Children ) who launched her first Roscommon County Council election campaign in 2004. Cllr. Leyden was successful in that Council election and three subsequent local elections.
Cllr. Leyden also afforded special appreciation to Mary and Cllr. Aengus O’Rourke, both of whom canvassed with her during last weekend.