In the pantheon of backroom operators, Frank Flannery has an exalted place. His biggest achievement wasn’t the 2011 general election, where a self-destructing Labour and a collapsed Fianna Fáil were easy opposition, but in the early 1980s, when he formed part of Fine Gael’s ‘National Handlers’ group which won the party its highest ever level of support.
Flanery’s core strengths have always been a deep understanding of both...
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