I put the question: "That Deputy Pat The Cope Gallagher, who is the successful candidate duly selected by the secret ballot by the Members of Dáil Éireann, be elected and do now take the Chair of the Dáil as Leas-Cheann Comhairle."
Election of Leas-Cheann Comhairle (Resumed)
Cléireach na Dála
I call on the newly-elected Leas-Cheann Comhairle to come forward and make his declarations.
I have taken the oath and now take the opportunity to say how extremely grateful I am to the House for electing me as Leas-Cheann Comhairle of this, the Thirty-second Dáil. It is an honour and privilege to have been elected to this prestigious position. I pay tribute to those who contested this position, Deputies Seán Crowe, Bernard Durkan and Mattie McGrath, any of whom would have filled the role to the highest standards and with the professionalism expected of a Leas-Cheann Comhairle.
I want to briefly reaffirm my commitment yesterday to fulfil my duties as Leas-Cheann Comhairle in a fair, balanced, impartial and understanding manner, and uphold the rights and privileges of you, the Members of this House. I of course want to pay tribute to my immediate predecessor, the Leas-Cheann Comhairle of the Thirty-first Dáil, Michael Kitt, and wish him well in his retirement.
Geallaim do na Teachtaí go léir - agus tá mé dáiríre faoi seo - go ndéanfaidh mé mo dhícheall chun cothrom na féinne a thabhairt dóibh.
Dar ndóigh, ba mhaith liom mo chomhghairdeas a dhéanamh le Pat the Cope as a bheith tofa agus táim ag súil le bheith ag obair leis. I congratulate Deputies Durkan, McGrath and Crowe on having contested the position. I now ask Deputy Durkan to say a few words.
I thank the Ceann Comhairle. I of course wish to congratulate the successful candidate, Deputy Pat The Cope Gallagher, and wish him well. I will do my utmost, as all of us in the House try to do, to help and co-operate with him in his duties as Leas-Cheann Comhairle.
On occasions like this one should always thank one's proposer and seconder, but the way the system works means it does not always work out that way. I want to thank those who voted for me, those who did not vote for me, whom I mentioned yesterday, those who would like to have voted for me and could not vote for me, and those who did vote for me and maybe did not like to do so. In the combination of all there emerged a result. Mind you, it was a close one, A Cheann Comhairle. It does not get much closer than that. I was privileged to have had an opportunity to contest the very important post. I again congratulate my fellow unsuccessful contestants, without whom it would have been a straight contest. Things might have been different or better. All of these things add to the sum of the total, all of which is very welcome. Comhghairdeas don Teachta Pat The Cope Gallagher.
Dúirt an Teachta Seán Crowe go bhfuil sé an-bhuíoch do na Teachtaí a thug vóta dó. Ar mo shon fhéin agus ar son an Teachta Crowe, ba mhaith liom mo chomhghairdeas a dhéanamh le Pat the Cope. Tá mé an-shásta go mbeidh sé mar Leas-Cheann Comhairle iontach. Go n-éirí an t-ádh leis agus go n-éirí an t-ádh le Teachtaí Durkan agus McGrath feasta. Táim buíoch dóibh.
On behalf of the rural Independents, I would like to congratulate Deputy Pat The Cope Gallagher on his election as Leas-Cheann Comhairle. He will be very fair and balanced, and will work with all Deputies in the House. I would also like to offer my good wishes to Deputies Durkan, Crowe and McGrath. I do not know where Deputy McGrath is; I thought he would be here. We look forward to working with Deputy Pat the Cope Gallagher in his new role.