The political party Aontú is set to have at least 20 candidates in the general election on February 8, according to Meath TD and party leader Peadar Tóibín.
He says they hope to obtain 4% of the vote, which would mean about 40,000 first preferences – twice the amount needed for the party to begin receiving state funding.
The party was formed this time last year and currently has 16 candidates selected for their first ever general election.
“This is a key election for people with our core values, people who are interested in seeing our core values at the centre of political debate and the Ireland of the future needs to actually get involved in this election in some way,” said Tóibín.
The party has struggled thus far due to a lack of state funding: “Every single other Dáil party gets state funding except for ourselves, which means that most of our activities…are being done on a voluntary basis at the moment,” said Tóibín. He feels the state funding system favours legacy parties.
The party have a multiple issue mandate including protection of the right to life and all Ireland unification. The party will seek to reverse the abortion legislation which was enacted at the end of 2018.
Peadar Tóibín resigned from Sinn Féin on November 15, 2018 due to his stance on abortion and then announced his new party Aontú in January 2019, in both Northern Ireland and the Republic.
He said: “The parties core values stem around the right to life, economic justice and Irish unity.
“Right now, I believe we have a political cartel in place in this country, who have turned their back on issues such as the right to life.
“We need to make sure there’s a voice ,a strong democratically elected voice to get that issue back on the agenda and make sure that we support mothers and make sure that mothers have the economic confidence to be able to raise their children to their full potential.”
He called on people to canvass, volunteer and stand for election if they would like to see party issues brought to the table.