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Saturday, March 23, 2013

Members of the Seventeenth Dáil - Paddy Harte

Paddy Harte (born 26 July 1931) is a retired Irish Fine Gael politician who served for 36 years as Teachta Dála (TD) for Donegal North–East.

He was born in 1931 in Lifford, County Donegal. His son, Jimmy Harte, is a Labour Party Senator.

He was first elected to the 17th Dáil at the 1961 general election, and re-elected at eleven further general elections. In the 22nd Dáil, from 1981 to 1982, he was Minister of State at the Department of Posts and Telegraphs in Taoiseach Garret FitzGerald's government. In 1989 he was an unsuccessful candidate in the Connacht–Ulster constituency at the elections to the European Parliament. He lost his seat at the 1997 general election to the Independent Fianna Fáil candidate Harry Blaney, and unsuccessfully contested the 1997 elections to Seanad Éireann on the Industrial and Commercial Panel. After this, he retired from politics.

Since his retirement he has been involved in a number of projects, including (along with Glen Barr) the Messines Island of Ireland Peace Park in West Flanders in Belgium. This park was officially opened in November 1998 by President Mary McAleese, Queen Elizabeth II and King Albert II of the Belgians to commemorate all Irishmen who died in World War I.

He was appointed an Honorary OBE in October 2006 for his ecumenical works. He received an honorary Doctorate of Laws from the National University of Ireland in September 2007 in recognition of his contribution to politics.

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