Running the Race

Sunday morning, 25 May 2014

I have run the race and am reaching the end. I have yet to cross the line but it is in sight. My legs are sore, my breathing laboured and there are rubs on my feet.  There are many ahead of me; a goodly pack of politicians, first timers, old timers, new seekers, tired thinkers, young ones, old ones and inbetween ones. There are even one or two stragglers behind me. We have all run our race, some with parties, some without, some with zeal, some with polish, some with ideas quite divergent and some with ideas that are as old as the earth we cross.

In this race there were moments when people slipped, were pushed or just fell. Mostly the other runners skipped over or ran around the runner on the ground. It was rare a hand was held out by another runner; it is not that kind of race. But it was common for the spectators to rush forward and pull the runner to his feet, to push water into his hand and to chivvy him on his way. No runner left behind, not until the fat lady sings anyway.

When I first put my name forward for this race, my friend and neighbour Tony said to me: Are you cotton pickin mad?. And I looked him in the eye and said; Yes. But I had it worked out in my head.

It was never about getting elected; it was always about making a difference.

This was the same conversation I had with Deputy Shane Ross; one of the first people I spoke with about running and who subsequently gave me the highest compliment possible; giving me his endorsement along with campaigner Diarmiud O’Flynn with a ringing cry ‘Two noble independent battlers. Both deserve seats. 

I entered this race with the end in mind; the prize I wanted was the race itself. I wanted to use my time to talk about the burning issue at the heart of my personal campaign for the past three years: the unjust treatment of Irish families in debt. I wanted to stop to vilification of people in debt.

I wanted to change the law and language and the bullying.

To me, running was not about winning, it was about making a difference.

Of course, there were times along the way when the voice of pride spoke into my ear; you can win it said softly and sinuously. You can take a seat. You can go to Europe. I listened but shook my head. Winning was never about getting elected, whatever Selfish Pride might say. I knew from the start that my message, while loudspeaker noisy, was unlikely to translate into medals. I was unlikely to be in the ribbons. Still, when I heard my vote from the local count last night I was saddened a little.

Every vote I got was humbling, every vote I didn’t get was equally so.

But Selfish Pride washed no babies, helped no neighbours and gave no hope to a family in distress.

 

So, as I prepare to travel down to Cork to meet my fellow European candidates I do so with the right kind of pride in my heart.

The pride of having run the race to the end, to having treated my fellow candidates with respect.

The pride of helping where I could, and certainly not harming where I was able.

The pride of having stood shoulder to shoulder as we prepared for war; under the lights of the TV cameras, before the microphones in the studio, or caught in the glare of the inquisitor searching for the truth.

To my fellow combatants: I salute you on the race run. I am honoured to have run beside you, behind you and sometimes (in a rare moment) even in front of some of you.

And as I come to end of the race I ran, my wish is that people remember what I stood for and what I will continue to stand for until such time as fairness, justice and truth are the norm.

And now – the fat lady sings. For the hidden pain of debt – I think in hymns. And I thank you for allowing me to run the race.

And I cross the line.

postscript. I continued to Cork where I was amazed and proud to exit the race on 11,5000 votes. Now, my race is run. Thank you.

jill on vinbjill on vinb2jill on vinb3

Shane Ross endorses Jillian Godsil – with Diarmuid O’Flynn

Deputy Shane Ross has announced he is endorsing my candidacy for Ireland South in the upcoming European European elections. He has also taken the unusual step of endorsing a fellow Independent Candidate Diarmuid O’Flynn, founder of the Ballyhea Protestors. We are both running in Ireland South. The election is on May 23rd.

Last night Shane announced on Twitter:

I will endorse both Jillian Godsil AND Diarmuid O’Flynn for Europe. Two noble independent battlers. Both deserve seats. Sorry decision delay.

Please find his tweet here 

This is an outstanding day for democracy. Irish citizens now have the option to vote for the people of their choice and not be curtailed by party politics. It sends a clear signal to the government that Independents are the new Opposition.

I personally am very honoured to have received Shane’s endorsement. I am also proud to be endorsed alongside Diarmuid O’Flynn whose dedication to Ireland and justice is unrivalled,

 

To be named by one Irish patriot in the company of another is a wonderful day indeed.

I came to prominence over the past three years when I very publicly documented my personal descent into financial misery; divorce and recession combined to force the collapse of my business, the repossession of my home by the banks and finally push me into bankruptcy. But even as I hit rock bottom, I began fighting back for people in similar distress. I am tireless in calling out the injustice of leaving the banks in charge, in the unfit for purpose insolvency laws and the lack of transparency in Ireland. On April 16 I single handedly changed the laws in Ireland, removing the ban on bankrupts to run for public office, and now I have set my sights on Europe – to undo the unjust burden of 42% of the banking debt on the Irish people.

l was once called the brokest woman in Ireland. If voted into Europe, I can wear the title of the brokest woman in Europe for the Insolvency Service has vowed to take any salary off me for the next eight years – to give it to the banks!

Before becoming bankrupt, I had serious international experience having held senior jobs in London, Sydney and Singapore. I am no stranger to international business. I will moreover use my journalist and broadcast skills to shine a light into Europe. My planned regular TV programme has a working title #thegravytrain.

Please vote Independent on May 23rd.

 

thank you

Jillian