Patrick Nulty

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Patrick Nulty
Teachta Dála
In office
29 October 2011 – 24 March 2014
Constituency Dublin West
Fingal County Councillor
In office
June 2009 – October 2011
Constituency Mulhuddart
Personal details
Born (1982-11-18) 18 November 1982 (age 32)
Dublin, Ireland
Political party Independent,
Labour Party (–2013)
Alma mater Trinity College, Dublin
University College Dublin

Patrick Nulty (born 18 November 1982) is a former Irish politician. He was elected as a Teachta Dála (TD) for Dublin West at a by-election in October 2011.[1] He sat as an independent TD after losing the Labour Party whip on 6 December 2011.[2] He resigned as a TD on 24 March 2014.[3]


Nulty was born and raised in Corduff near Dublin.[4] When two weeks old, he was injured in a house fire, leaving him with burn scars on his face and arms.[5] He attended Riversdale Community College and has a degree in social policy from Trinity College, Dublin and a Masters in Social Science from University College Dublin.[4] He worked as a social policy advisor for a homeless charity for five years.[4] He is also a former National Chairperson of Labour Youth and was a prominent activist of the Students' Union in Trinity.

Political career[edit]

County Council[edit]

Nulty was elected to Fingal County Council for Labour at the 2009 local elections in the Mulhuddart local electoral area.[6]


He was Labour's unsuccessful second candidate for Dublin West at the 2011 general election, where running-mate Joan Burton topped the poll,[6][7] but was elected as a Teachta Dála (TD) for Dublin West at a by-election in October 2011. It was the first time since 1982 that a government party candidate had won a by-election.[8][9]

He was on the Labour Party's left wing, and opposed both the Lisbon Treaty[10] and Labour's coalition deal with Fine Gael after the election.[7] He also rejected the idea of a transfer pact with the Fine Gael candidate despite the parties' coalition.[11] While in opposition he called on his former colleagues to legislate for the X case as had been promised by Labour for many years.[12] Nulty voted against the VAT increase in the 2012 budget and lost the Labour Party whip as a result.[13]

He was described as a "Labour rebel candidate" by the Irish Independent,[7] while The Irish Times quoted the label "anti-government Government candidate" discussing his opposition to cuts in services at Blanchardstown Hospital.[14]

On 21 June 2013, he resigned from the Labour Party.[15]

Resignation as TD[edit]

He resigned from the Dáil on 24 March 2014 as a result of having sent inappropriate Facebook messages to a 17-year-old female, and to two other adult women.[16] At first he denied that he was the sender of the messages, and claimed that his phone had been hacked, but subsequently admitted his behaviour when confronted with evidence that the messages had been sent from Leinster House.[17][18] Nulty apologised for his behaviour and said the "message was sent while under the influence of alcohol".[3] In September 2015 he was awarded a teaching scholarship by the University of Limerick to undertake a PhD in Politics and Public Administration.


  1. ^ "Mr. Patrick Nulty". Oireachtas Members Database. Retrieved 23 March 2014. 
  2. ^ "Nulty exits coalition in Budget row". Belfast Telegraph (Belfast). 6 December 2011. Retrieved 6 December 2011. 
  3. ^ a b "Nulty resigns over 'inappropriate' Facebook messages". RTÉ News. 23 March 2014. 
  4. ^ a b c Nulty, Patrick. "About". Blog. Retrieved 28 October 2011. 
  5. ^ "‘I don’t come from a political dynasty’". Irish Examiner (Cork). 14 October 2011. Retrieved 28 October 2011. 
  6. ^ a b "Patrick Nulty". Retrieved 28 October 2011. 
  7. ^ a b c Drennan, John; McConnell, Daniel (23 October 2011). "Fianna Fáil gives up the fight for Lenihan's former seat". Irish Independent. Retrieved 28 October 2011. 
  8. ^ "Nulty elected in Dublin West". Irish Examiner. 29 October 2011. Retrieved 29 October 2011. 
  9. ^ O'Halloran, Marie (29 October 2011). "Labour wins Dublin byelection". The Irish Times. Retrieved 29 October 2011. 
  10. ^ "By-election race shows plenty of Western promise for Labour". Sunday Business Post. 9 October 2011. Retrieved 28 October 2011. 
  11. ^ Connolly, Niamh (9 October 2011). "Labour candidate to reject FG vote transfer". Sunday Business Post. Retrieved 28 October 2011. 
  12. ^ "No legislation 20 years after the X Case". RTÉ News. 17 February 2012. 
  13. ^ O'Halloran, Marie; O'Regan, Michael (6 December 2011). "Labour TD votes against Vat measure". The Irish Times. 
  14. ^ McGee, Harry (18 October 2011). "Dublin West may halt a 29-year trend". The Irish Times. Retrieved 28 October 2011. 
  15. ^ "Patrick Nulty resigns from Labour Party". RTÉ News. 21 June 2013. 
  16. ^ "Irish MP Patrick Nulty quits over 'inappropriate' Facebook messages". BBC News. 23 March 2014. 
  17. ^ "Nulty resigns over ‘inappropriate’ Facebook messages". Irish Times. 22 March 2014. 
  18. ^ "TD sent 'spanking' Facebook messages to girl (17)". Sunday World. 22 March 2014. 
Preceded by
Brian Lenihan, Jnr
(Fianna Fáil)
Teachta Dála for Dublin West
Succeeded by
Ruth Coppinger
(Socialist Party)