It’s a long, long way from Clare to beer…

Not pictured: Clare Daly.

Full disclosure – I’ve never met Clare Daly, but we’re in touch on occasion via e-mail, mostly about how incompetent her colleagues in Leinster House are.

It turns out to that she was stopped by the GardaĆ­ the other night on suspicion of driving while intoxicated, taken to a police station and asked to provide a sample.

The results aren’t in yet and no charges have been made, but if she is found guilty of any offence she should face the full rigour of the law, like any citizen.

She has said as much herself.

What is interesting is that this news came out without any charges being made, or any results of any test being available.

The GardaĆ­ take dozens of such tests every week, often from well-known figures, and yet they never make the headlines. So why is Clare Daly being dragged through the mud on the evening news?

I’d hate to think that the Guardians of the Peace are so petty as to want revenge for her naming figures who have had penalty points quashed by friendly peelers in the past. But unfortunately it can’t be ruled out.

It reminds me of the recent spectacular incident in Stockholm. You remember the one – where the cleaner stole the train and rammed it into the side of an apartment block?

Except she didn’t. No charges were brought, and her employers now face demands for compensation for destroying the reputation of the woman involved.

In short, the whole world heard of her “stealing” the train. Only the merest fraction of it heard of her innocence.

As mentioned above, if Clare is guilty she should and will face the full rigour of the law.

But if she is not, there is still no comeback for her in this instance. She is tainted by association with the test, and nothing more. Media outlets will not waste energy trying to find out who hung her out to dry. They will move one.

The fact that someone is asked to blow in a bag or provide a sample at a police station, or indeed takes part in any police investigation, is not enough to warrant the full glare of publicity. Not even if you’re a Healy-Rae.

I look forward to the Minister for Communications jumping to her defence, although I don’t expect to see former socialist Pat Rabbitte doing anything of the sort.



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