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John Whelan

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John Whelan has been a journalist, commentator, columnist, political analyst, campaigner, politician and publisher ever since he was 17. Having been Editor of the Leinster Express, Offaly Express and the Leinster Leader he has also contributed extensively on a number of issues to all of the country's flagship titles and programmes including the Irish Press, The Irish Independent, the Star, the Sunday Independent, the Sunday Business Post, The Sunday Times and Prime Time. He is founder of Communicate Ireland a PR, public affairs, event management and media services company. He is the author of the popular camping blog, Vanhalla - Camper Heaven.

Seán Fleming returned to the Dáil for Fianna Fáil on final count

That Seán Fleming had to wait until the 11th and final count in Laois-Offaly to secure his seat in the 33rd Dáil is testament...

Count 8 drama in Kildare South with FF in the firing line

Kildare South is playing out as a bit of a nightmare for Fianna Fáil. Instead of securing a gain which they had targeted they are...

John Whelan: This wasn’t a Sinn Féin surge, it was a tsunami that stunned...

A Sinn Fein surge, they say. Scratch that. This was a tsunami. A tsunami of support that swept away everything in its political path. Laois,...

John Whelan: You could go on holidays and still get elected for Sinn Féin

"You could go on holidays and still get elected for Sinn Féin," a shrewd political observer said to me during the week. It turns out...

GE2020 – a bluffer’s guide to the General Election in numbers

Today, Saturday, February 8 is polling day. Polling stations will remain open from 7am until 10pm tonight. Voters will elect 160 TDs across the country in...

Election Memories 1973 & 1977:  A Minister for Laois, Hall’s Pictorial Weekly and a...

The two General Elections of the 1970s were the first to be really contested in the full glare of the then relatively new-fangled gadget,...

Election Memories: The turbulent 80s but Laois-Offaly resolutely remains Fianna Fáil country

So you think the political landscape is fragile, fractured and fragmented – well you clearly weren’t around in the 1980s. The 80s, the decade that...

New Director of Services takes up post at County Hall

A new director-of- Services has taken up his post with Laois County Council. Mr Joe Delaney attended his first meeting of the local authority last...

Laois-Offaly Constituency to feature on RTE 9 O’ Clock news

The Laois-Offaly constituency will be centre stage on the main RTE 9 O’ Clock news bulletin tonight, Wednesday, February 5. The hotly contested 5-seat marginal...

New committee set up to liaise on Electric Picnic issues

A new committee has been established to deal with public concerns regarding the Electric Picnic. And in the long worn tradition of so many Irish...

On the Canvass: Pauline Madigan and a tale of two Flanagans

Some people will do anything to get elected. Pauline Madigan even changed her name. Pauline, as we all call her anyway, is now Pauline Flanagan. It’s...

Election Memories from the 1990s – Gallagher rides the Labour wave on the ‘Spring...

The general elections of the 1990s were in sporting parlance, a game of two halves, with a major incident in the tunnel as the...

2002 & 2007 Election Memories: The rise and fall of Parlon and the PDs

In the spring of 2002 Mary Harney courted farm leader Tom Parlon and won him over. She wiped the eye of Parlon’s other suitor, Michael...

On the Canvass: For Seán Fleming’s campaign every day is a school day

We’re in Clogh. Clogh, Ballacolla. This is farming country. Fields, cows and sheds everywhere you look. Seán is biding his time. A man in a big...

Pundit Ivan Yates predicts three Fianna Fáil seats for Laois-Offaly

Pulling no punches and certainly not hedging his bets the former bookie and Fine Gael TD and Minister Ivan Yates has  predicted that his...

No takers for St Patrick’s Day trip to New York

In a bizarre turn of events, there are no takers for a trip to New York to represent County Laois at the New York...

Enforcement notice served on illegal Mountrath encampment

Laois County Council have confirmed that they have served an enforcement notice on the illegal encampment of caravans at Shannon Road in Mountrath. The notice...

Pubs closed, residents in fear as Laois town in lockdown and under siege

A Laois town is this week in lockdown and under siege it has been alleged. The sensational and extraordinary claim was made at a meeting...

John Leahy hoping to make it third time lucky in Laois-Offaly

Kilcormac based councillor, John Leahy is on the ballot for Laois-Offaly for the third time. He hopes he can make the breakthrough and get...

Election Memories: FF meltdown makes way for Stanley in Laois-Offaly in 2011

Have you seen the 1917 World War 1 movie? Well the 2011 General Election was something similar … for Fianna Fáil. They got slaughtered. The unprecedented...

John Whelan: The Ten Commandments – the top 10 election issues in Laois-Offaly

In 2016 the big issues on the doors, in the media and the hustings were unemployment, emigration, pay cuts, austerity cutbacks and the most...

Laois-Offaly General Election count confirmed for Portlaoise

The counting of votes for the Laois-Offaly Constituency in General Election 2020 will take place in Portlaoise. The premises being used for the count is...

Election Diary: Greens move to mend fences as the IFA call candidates to account

Can the momentum in favour of the Greens reach the midlands and get behind their Laois-Offaly candidate, Senator Pippa Hackett? It’s a big ask in...

Frosty reception for calls to grit icy roads near rural schools

Even as temperatures continue to plummet to as much as minus 6 degrees Celsius Laois councillors have been unable to prevail on the local...

Election Memories: FF leave seat behind them as Sinn Féin make a gain in...

Although joined at the hip since the birth of the nation Laois-Offaly were separated for the first time for general election purposes in 2016. Previously,...

Weekend Read: Pumphouse problem pauses progress in Laois village

Any future development, housing or investment in a popular Laois village is at a standstill due to a bizarre problem over the status of...

A raft of issues in Laois village need to be tackled

A whole litany of issues which need to be tackled in a Laois village have been well ventilated this week. The matters concerning Ballaghmore were...

Durrow one-way, no-way Jose, says Ollie

A proposal to introduce a one-way traffic system for the town of Durrow has been greeted with an emphatic thumbs down by the local...

‘There is going to be someone killed’ unless something is done

Paddy Bracken spelled it out in no uncertain terms. Someone is going to be killed at Turley’s Corner in Mountmellick unless something is done with...

People Before Profit enter the fray in Laois-Offaly with well known community activist

People Before Profit have entered the political fray in Laois-Offaly. The Party will field a candidate in a general election in this constituency for the...