From Irish Central:
- Deciding what kind of country we want to live in – the Irish presidential race:
Choosing Sean Gallagher as president could mean choosing to return to Ireland’s old ways
Sean Gallagher talking to Rachael English on Morning Ireland, 20th of October, 2011:
English: So you rang people up and invited them?
Gallagher: No, people that I met, I explained that there was this event coming up. I have to make it very clear, I sought no money, I received no money from anybody, that was dealt with by Headquarters Fianna Fail Headquarters. I also want to make it very clear that while I attended the event I was not asked for money, I made no contribution myself in either a personal capacity or as a corporate donation either before the event, during the event, or after the event.
English: How many people did you invite?
Gallagher: I think I mentioned to possibly three or four people, and I have no idea to this day whether or not they made a donation whatsoever.
Seán Gallagher talking to Brian Dobson, October 25, 2011:
Dobson: You say and indeed Mr Morgan says he never met you before he didn’t know you when he made
Gallagher: nor since
Dobson: it was a cold call if you like to see if he’d come along to this event
Gallagher: somebody had given me his name…
Dobson: presumably you phoned him up and he asked about this and you told him that there would be a donation of €5,000 expected to attend this
Gallagher: what I was asked to say was that there was a level of up to €5,000, I have no idea, until I saw this
Dobson: that’s what you told him
Dobson: that he would pay €5,000 for this
Gallagher: make a donation up to
Dobson: but previously your spokesperson said that you had not solicited a donation for Fianna Fail. That’s not true is it?
Gallagher: no, that’s not true, what I said was that there was a fundraising event happening and if he liked to come along he could make a donation
Dobson: right, and that doesn’t count as soliciting, no?
Gallagher: I’m saying that that’s what I said
Dobson: was that not soliciting a donation?
Gallagher: well it could be
Dobson: why did your spokesperson say you did not solicit a donation
Gallagher: I’m not sure what my spokesman said but I’m telling you now exactly what I said
Dobson: Well I’ll give you now that quote. Your spokesman said that “at no point did he actively solicit any donation, he would have been in touch with a number of people he knew to tell them it was on”. To discover you didn’t actually know Mr Morgan.
Dobson: But that’s not true either.
Gallagher: Well no no let me clarify. I asked a number of business people in the area did they want to attend and one of them obviously recommended Mr. Morgan as somebody who might like to attend.
Dobson: So you did ask people who you didn’t know as it turns out
Gallagher: I asked people I did know and if they recommended someone else that they knew
Gallagher: and so I was not aware of this
Dobson: so you did invite people who you didn’t know and you did solicit a donation from at least one of those people
Gallagher: this was a fundraising event and I informed anyone that I rang there was a level up to which they could nominate or donate and that they would make that payable to Fianna Fáil Headquarters
Dobson: Just finally, none of this is remotely remarkable at all, it’s what you would expect someone who’s involved in a political party to do after an election to try to rebuild
Gallagher: absolutely correct
Dobson: to ring around and ask people to come along and support us and you were doing whatever any other senior Fianna Fail figure
Gallagher: Well I wasn’t a senior Fianna Fail figure
Dobson: Well you were a campaign director for a TD at the time
Gallagher: well I had been in 2007 and I was quite happy to assist the event by inviting local businesspeople. Now, the allegation is made that there is something corrupt, the cheque was made out to Fianna Fail Headquarters and I did not collect
Dobson: you have not been telling the truth
Gallagher: no not at all
Dobson: that’s the allegation, there’s no allegation of corruption here at all
Gallagher: one of the first things, I always tell the truth, anyone’s who’s watched my campaign knows two things, one I do not get involved in negative campaigning and two I always tell the truth, always.