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Dan Spring
Personal information
Sport Gaelic football
Position Full-Forward
Place of birth Tralee , County Kerry
Club(s)*
Years Club Apps (scores)
1930's-1940's Kerins O'Rahilly's
Inter-County(ies)**
Years County Apps (scores)
1934-1940 Kerry 13 (6-10)
Senior Inter-County Titles
Munster Titles 4
All-Ireland 3
NFL 0
All Stars 0

Dan Spring (1 July 1910 – 1 January 1988) was an Irish politician who represented the constituency of Kerry North in the Dáil, from 1943 to 1981. He was a member of the Labour Party and was the father of Dick Spring, who led the Labour Party from 1982 to 1997.

Dan Spring was born into a working-class family in Tralee, County Kerry. He left school at the age of 14 and began his working life with a series of low-skilled jobs. When he was working at a mill, he became involved in the Irish Transport and General Workers Union (ITGWU) and after a while became a trade union official.

Spring first became prominent neither as a politician nor as a trade unionist, but as a Gaelic football player. He was the captain of the Tralee Kerins O'Rahilly's team and captain of the Kerry county side when they won the All-Ireland final in 1940. Through this and his involvement with the ITGWU he became well-known enough to stand in Kerry North for the Labour Party in the 1943 general election. He was elected as the first Labour Teachta Dála (TD) in Kerry ever and held his seat until he retired in 1981.

In 1944 Spring was among a number of 6 TDs who broke away from the Labour Party because it was allegedly infiltrated by communists and formed a new party they called the National Labour Party. The Labour Party and the National Labour Party reunited in 1950, having worked alongside each other in the First Inter-Party Government since 1948.

In 1956, during the term of the Second Inter-Party Government Spring was promoted to Parliamentary Secretary, which he held until the government ended in 1957.

For the rest of his political career Spring never held any significant post on a national level, and as a relatively conservative rural Labour man he fell out of step with the official line of the Labour Party, which moved significantly to the left during the 1960s and 1970s. During a vote on contraception, Spring famously said that on the day on the vote, his constituents would see how he stood on the issue. On the day of the vote, he appeared as a barrister in a court far away from the parliament. Spring concentrated on his constituency work and was returned in every election he stood until he retired in 1981, his son Dick then successfully contesting the seat.

See also

References

Oireachtas
Preceded by
John O'Sullivan
(Fine Gael)
Labour Party Teachta Dála for Kerry North
1943–1981
Succeeded by
Dick Spring
(Labour Party)
Political offices
Preceded by
William Davin
Parliamentary Secretary to the
Minister for Local Government

1956–1957
Succeeded by
Office abolished
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