Miriam Meets.... Minister Joan Burton and Pat Carroll
This week, Miriam O'Callaghan interviews Minister Joan Burton and her husband Pat Carroll. The couple describe how they met through the Labour Party and how their whirlwind romance ended in marriage within the year.
They explain how Pat was the first to run for the Dail, but Minister Burton was ultimately successful in 1992. Working in Tanzania in the mid 1980s had changed her view of running for election. They describe the drama of the election day count. Pat is now a Minister's spouse and reflects on the issues of loyalty that this presents. Minister Burton, in response to questions on her ambition to lead the Labour Party explains her priority is getting the country's problems sorted.
Both Pat and the Minister won scholarships that enabled them to go to University. Both families had a great committment to education. But Pat describes the Burtons as noisy, loving music and dancing, while the Carrolls were a quieter bunch.
Pat is from Dundalk while Minister Burton was born in Carlow but adopted into a Dublin family. They reflect on her quest to find her birth mother. While her birth mother died before a reunion could take place, they describe their memories of meeting her extended family.
Both reflect on the current government, on the impact of coalition on Labour Party fortunes and principles and the enduring value of the art of politics in the face of increasing public disillusionment.
They chose Van Morrison's Moondance, Miriam Makeba's Malaika and Button and Bow's Waltz of Happiness