Bill Cullen, the former host of the Irish version (read: lower budget and unglamorous) of The Apprentice, has today announced that he is entering the ongoing Fine Gael leadership contest.
Following in the footsteps of Donald Trump- a man whose whole aesthetic seems to be cultivated specifically to answer the question, “Hey, what would it look like if someone varnished an orangutan?”- Mr. Cullen is seeking to convert an inexplicable career in showbusiness into political success.
At a press conference in his car showroom in Naas today, Mr Cullen launched his surprise bid. Given that the official period to nominate oneself for consideration in the Fine Gael leadership debate closed last Saturday, Mr. Cullen appears to hold suitably similar levels of disdain for the protocols of government as does President Trump.
During his short launch speech he put forward his plans of basic economic pragmatism for the nation, but warned against anyone raising their expectations too high. This was perhaps best illustrated by his campaign slogan ‘Make Ireland Competent, But Not Overly Impressive, Again’. His manifesto however did little to expound upon this, being, as it was presented to us, simply a beermat bearing just two hand-scrawled points : “1) Convert all existing orchards into roller-derbies. 2) Rename every horse ‘Glen’.”
An employee of the car showroom which Mr. Cullen runs and owns when asked about what political acumen would Mr. Cullen possess to make him suitable for the role, said, under condition of anonymity, “Well… he has a very powerful sense of smell and I once saw him kill a pigeon with a tennis racket in one swipe. I’m not sure if either of those would translate directly to making him a good leader, but it’s certainly better than nothing I suppose…”
Following this, I attempted to ask Bill Cullen himself to see why he thought he’d be suitable for the role of leader of Fine Gael and thus, Taoiseach. He however told me that his lunch hour had now ended and he was back on the payroll of the show-room. He deflected any attempt to turn our conversation round to politics and instead tried, quite forcefully, to sell me a used Toyota Avensis instead. Things became rather heated and in the interests of not having my face “pulverised like a jaffa orange in a lawnmower”, I acquiesced, and arranged to have my nephew come to collect my new ride.
Voting will begin for all Fine Gael party members in 26 polling stations between May 29- June 1.