Skip to main content

Trinity College Dublin, The University of Dublin

Trinity Menu Trinity Search



You are here Candidates > Meet the Candidates

Patricia McKenna Bio

  • Married with three children
  • Graduate of Trinity College - Law & Politics
  • Also a graduate of King's Inns, the National College of Art and Design, Limerick School of Art & Design and Letterkenny IT
  • Practising Barrister, member of the Law Library, called to the Bar in 2016.

Served as a Member of the European Parliament for Dublin from 1994 to 2004 for the Green Party. She is strictly non-party with no political affiliations since she left the Greens in 2009 in protest at their performance in Government and support for the Bank Bail-outs and the creation of NAMA.

Legally challenged the Government’s use of taxpayers money to promote one side in a referendum (McKenna v An Taoiseach 1995). Despite supporting the Government’s constitutional amendment in that particular referendum she saw it as unfair and undemocratic to abuse taxpayer’s money in this way. The Supreme Court held that the use of public money by Government on one-sided campaigning in a referendum campaign was unconstitutional and an interference in the democratic process.

Was one of Ireland’s most active MEP’s in holding the decision makers to account. Served as Vice President of the Green Group and was Vice Chair of the Parliament’s Delegation to ASEAN.

Patricia Served on the Following Committees:

  • Environment, Public Health and Consumer Policy
  • Fisheries
  • Security and Disarmament* 
  • Foreign Affairs, Human Rights, Common Security and Defence Policy
  • Citizens' Freedoms and Rights, Justice and Home Affairs
  • Women’s Rights
  • Budgetary Control
  • Employment and Social Affairs
  • Temporary committee on:
  • Echelon Interception System
  • Inquiry into the Community Transit System

* Disarmament was later dropped and replaced by Defence 

European Parliament’s Rapporteur on Many Important Reports Including:

  • Integrated coastal zone management in Europe
  • Cooperation in the field of accidental marine pollution
  • Protection of waters against pollution cause by nitrates from agricultural sources 
  • Fisheries management and nature conservation in the marine environment
  • Control measures applicable to fishing for certain stocks of highly migratory fish
  • Own-Initiative Report for Parliament on Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated Fishing Activities and the role of flags of convenience in the fisheries sector (McKenna Report). This led to the Council Regulation on the issue.
  • On aquaculture in the European Union: the present situation and future prospects (opinion)
  • On protection of animals during transport and related operations (opinion)

One of Parliament’s Negotiators in Conciliation Procedure regarding regulations on animal testing of cosmetics, which led to ban on the sale and marketing in the EU of products made in other countries that have been tested on animals.

Tabled Declarations Passed by Parliament on:

  • The rights of deaf and blind people
  • Marketing of foods to children
  • Respect democracy in the European Union

Other Issues Pursued Include:

  • Opposition to the Iraq War
  • Inadequate environmental impact assessments in urban development in Ireland
  • Recognition of Irish as an official language of the EU
  • Gender mainstreaming in the European Commission
  • Reduction of the use of pesticides and biocides in the European Union 
  • European central banking and monetary system
  • European funding of Irish railways
  • Signing of agreements under Article 101 of the Euratom Treaty
  • Convention on mutual legal assistance and lawful interception of telecommunications