RECENTLY-elected Social Democrat TD for Cork South West, Holly Cairns, has apologised for tweets she posted in 2013 regarding the Pope.
In one of the tweets she described Pope Francis, three days after his 2013 election, as the leader of a ‘paedophile ring’. A few days earlier she had tweeted that she would ‘get an abortion’ for ‘every minute of air time taken up on the papal conclave’.
When the tweets were uncovered by an anti-abortion website this week, Deputy Cairns said she apologised ‘for the offence caused’.
She added: ‘The comments were made a long time ago, when I was a lot younger and the wording was inappropriate.’
She told The Southern Star that the comments were made eight years ago, in the context of the Ireland we lived in then, ‘where things like Equal Marriage and Repeal were a long way off.’
The deputy continued: ‘I phrased things badly and apologise that my choice of words caused offence for some people.’
The Church Cross farmer and environmentalist was first elected to Cork County Council last year after a lengthy recount saw her take the seat by just one vote.
She was the surprise winner of the final seat in Cork South West in the recent general election, after receiving a huge amount of transfers when Sinn Féin’s solo candidate Cllr Paul Hayes was eliminated.
She followed successful candidates Michael Collins (Ind) and her partner Fianna Fáil’s Christopher O’Sullivan, to take the third and final seat after a long count in Clonakilty, which saw outgoing FF TD Margaret Murphy O’Mahony lose the Fianna Fáil seat to the then-county mayor O’Sullivan.
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