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HistoryEdit

The party was founded by Peadar Tóibín, a TD who resigned from Sinn Féin on 15 November 2018 after opposing the party whip on the Health (Regulation of Termination of Pregnancy) Act 2018 due to his anti-abortion views.[13] He began canvassing elected representatives, securing support within a week from two local councillors in the Republic.[14] Tóibín held meetings across the island addressing interested potential members. The first Northern Ireland local councillor declared on 7 January 2019.[15] As of 28 January 2019 eight councillors had joined.[16] A second councillor in Northern Ireland joined on 26 February 2019.[17]

The name Aontú was announced at a meeting in Belfast on 28 January 2019.[18] The Meath Chronicle said that the announcement of the name was precipitated by its unexpected publication on the UK Electoral Commission website.[10] Tóibín said the party had sought registration in both jurisdictions, that "Aontú obviously means unity and our major objective is the unity of Irish people north and south".[19] He recalled Belfast as birthplace of the United Irishmen of 1798.[20] Aontú would "seek to build an all-Ireland economy to mitigate the worst effects of Brexit, economic justice for all and to protect the right to life."[11][1] Tóibín said he was talking with Sinn Féin, SDLP and independent representatives in Northern Ireland,[21] and that "people from Sinn Féin, SDLP and Fianna Fáil backgrounds would feel comfortable" in the party.[19]

The party has been described as conservative[22] and socially conservative.

ElectionsEdit

2019 local electionsEdit

At the 2019 Northern Ireland local elections on 2 May, Aontú nominated 16 candidates across 7 of the 11 local councils.[23] It won one seat, Anne McCloskey in Ballyarnett DEA on Derry and Strabane Council, with its two outgoing councillors losing their seats.[24] Several months after the election, a councillor for the SDLP in Mid Ulster left the party to join Aontú.[25]

The party nominated 53 candidates for the Republic's local elections on 24 May, including its seven sitting councillors. Three were elected.[26] It did not run any candidates in the elections for the European Parliament held in Northern Ireland[27] or in the Republic.[28]

Next Irish general electionEdit

Cavan County councillor Sarah O'Reilly was chosen to contest the Cavan–Monaghan constituency in the next general election in the Republic of Ireland.[29]

RepresentativesEdit

Dáil ÉireannEdit

Name Constituency
Peadar Tóibín Meath West

Local governmentEdit

Name Local Authority LEA / DEA
Anne McCloskey Derry City and Strabane District Council (NI) Ballyarnet
Denise Mullen Mid Ulster District Council (NI) Dungannon
Sarah O’Reilly Cavan County Council (ROI) Bailieborough – Cootehill
Emer Tóibín Meath County Council (ROI) Navan
Jim Codd Wexford County Council (ROI) Rosslare

FootnotesEdit

  1. ^ The Irish word aontú is the verbal noun of aontaigh, meaning "unite", "agree", "assent".[7][8][9] Party founder Peadar Tóibín when announcing its name said it means "unity and consent".[1][10]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b c Bray, Jennifer (28 January 2019). "Peadar Tóibín to name new political party 'Aontú'". The Irish Times. Retrieved 28 January 2019.
  2. ^ McBride, Sam (27 April 2019). "Sam McBride: Though slightly obscured from view, a hypothetical path to devolution exists". News Letter. Retrieved 25 September 2019.
  3. ^ "SDLP councillor quits to join Aontú". News Letter. 27 July 2019. Retrieved 25 September 2019.
  4. ^ Kelly, Ben (11 February 2019). "The Irish parties reaching across the border towards a new era for nationalism". The Independent. Retrieved 25 September 2019.
  5. ^ Finn, Christina. "Tóibín signs up two members to his new 'Euro-critical party' which aims to protect 'all human life'". TheJournal.ie. Retrieved 8 February 2019.
  6. ^ "aontú [Pronunciation]". Teanglann. Foras na Gaeilge. 2013. Retrieved 6 February 2019.
  7. ^ Ó Dónaill, Niall (1977). "aontú". Foclóir Gaeilge–Béarla. Retrieved 6 February 2019.
  8. ^ Ó Dónaill, Niall (1977). "aontaigh". Foclóir Gaeilge–Béarla. Retrieved 6 February 2019.
  9. ^ "aontú [Reverse Search]". New English-Irish Dictionary.
  10. ^ a b Becton, Gavan (29 January 2019). "Party started early for Tóibín". Meath Chronicle. Retrieved 6 February 2019.
  11. ^ a b Doyle, Kevin (28 January 2019). "Peadar Toibin reveals his new political party will be named Aontú". Independent.ie. Retrieved 29 January 2019.
  12. ^ "Electoral Commission - Political party registration - Current applications". Electoral Commission Electoral Commission. 28 January 2019. Retrieved 31 January 2019.
  13. ^ "Peadar Tóibín announces resignation from Sinn Féin". Irish Examiner. 15 November 2018. Retrieved 15 November 2018.
  14. ^ Finn, Christina. "Tóibín signs up two members to his new 'Euro-critical party' which aims to protect 'all human life'". TheJournal.ie. Retrieved 5 February 2019.
  15. ^ Young, Connla (7 January 2019). "Co Tyrone councillor Rosemarie Shields defects from SDLP to Peadar Tóibín's new party". Irish News. Retrieved 5 February 2019.
  16. ^ Murphy, Hannah (28 January 2019). "Una D'Arcy Joins Peadar Tóibín's New Political Party". Midlands 103. Retrieved 5 February 2019.
  17. ^ "Sinn Fein has lost contact with the grassroots says Lennon as he joins new republican party". Lurgan Mail. 26 February 2019.
  18. ^ Lehane, Mícheál (28 January 2019). "Tóibín reveals name of new political party". RTÉ News. Archived from the original on 29 January 2019. Retrieved 28 January 2019.
  19. ^ a b Young, Connla (29 January 2019). "New party formed by ex-Sinn Féin TD Peadar Tóibín to be called 'Aontú'". Irish News. Retrieved 5 February 2019.
  20. ^ "Peadar Tóibín names new political party Aontú". Irish Examiner. 29 January 2019. Retrieved 6 February 2019.
  21. ^ "More defections expected as McHugh joins new party". Impartial Reporter. 2 February 2019. Retrieved 5 February 2019.
  22. ^ McBride, Sam (27 April 2019). "Sam McBride: Though slightly obscured from view, a hypothetical path to devolution exists". News Letter. Retrieved 25 September 2019.
  23. ^ Kelly, Niall (9 April 2019). "Council elections 2019 – all you need to know Part I". Slugger O'Toole. Retrieved 30 April 2019.
  24. ^ "The final result of Northern Ireland's council election for all parties". As it happened: NI council election 2019. BBC News. 4 May 2019. Retrieved 5 May 2019.; Sweeney, Eamon. "Council Election 2019: Aontu get first candidate elected in the North". Derry Now. Retrieved 5 May 2019.; "Fermanagh and Omagh District Council candidates". Election 2019. BBC News. 4 May 2019. Mid Tyrone .. Rosemarie Shields ... Eliminated; "Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council candidates". Election 2019. BBC News. 4 May 2019. Retrieved 5 May 2019. Craigavon ... Fergal Thomas Lennon ... Eliminated
  25. ^ https://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/news/northern-ireland/sdlp-councillor-quits-party-over-same-sex-marriage-vote-and-joins-aont-38348652.html
  26. ^ Finn, Christina (15 May 2019). "Peadar Tóibín hits out at larger parties: 'If you vote Fianna Fáil, you get Fine Gael'". TheJournal.ie. Retrieved 16 May 2019.; Finn, Christina (4 June 2019). "Aontú sets its sights on Dáil seats as new party wins a handful of seats in the locals". TheJournal.ie. Retrieved 4 June 2019.
  27. ^ "2019 European elections: List of candidates for Northern Ireland". BBC. 28 April 2019. Retrieved 30 April 2019.
  28. ^ "European Election 2019 - Candidates". RTE.ie. 25 April 2019. Retrieved 30 April 2019.
  29. ^ https://www.northernsound.ie/sarah-oreilly-selected-aontus-general-election-candidate

External linksEdit