Roscommon Galway TD Joining New Political Party

The Deputy says he'd been weighing up his options over the past 12 months.

A Roscommon Galway TD is joining new political party, Independent Ireland.

Michael Fitzmaurice says he's joining Michael Collins and Richard O'Donoghue, who established the party, after 'extensive negotiations.'

Deputy Fitzmaurice had been weighing the options of creating a party, or stepping out of politics entirely, before joining his Independent Dáil colleagues.

He says it takes 'good people, willing to leave the cosy ranks of the Independent benches or establishment parties' to build something new.

Party Leader Michael Collins says Deputy Fitzmaurice's 'integrity and knowledge' make him a fantastic addition to Independent Ireland.

In a statement to Midlands 103, Deputy Fitzmaurice says he spent the last 12 months weighing up the landscape:

"Too often independents and new parties fragment into increasingly narrow camps when what is needed is unity, dialogue and occasionally compromise. 

I didn't want to see that happen here. I believe it is better for voters to have a clear, unambiguous choice at election time. I believe that Independent Ireland can be that choice. 

We are going to work day and night to build a party fit for government that will make the tough decisions and do what is right by the people of Ireland. 

Independent Ireland will be contesting upcoming elections with detailed election manifestos. We have great people doing great work right across the country. 

And before people start talking about right and left, and progressive and conservative, understand this: A nation, a society, is not one thing or another but a melting pot of diversity. 

Neither Independent Ireland as a party nor I as an individual, will accept the premise that politics should be used as a tool to divide people. The things that unite us as a nation are far greater than the things that divide us. Progress, real progress, can only be achieved through constructive and respectful dialogue; not division."

Deputy Fitzmaurice says that instead of forcing people to vote one way on legislation, they could just create better legislation:

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