Ben Briscoe Follows Father to Become Dublin’s 2nd Jewish Mayor
DUBLIN, Ireland (AP) _ Like father like son, Ben Briscoe has become Lord Mayor of Dublin, the second Jew to hold the office.
His late father, Robert Briscoe, was elected lord mayor in 1956 and proved such a hit that he was given a second term in 1961.
Ben Briscoe, 55, took over the gold chain of office from Carmencita Hederman after defeating her 28-22 in a city council vote Monday night.
It was the first time a son has followed his father into the Mansion House, Dublin’s mayoral residence, and Briscoe is assured of added prominence because he takes office midway through celebrations of the capital’s millennium.
The office, which carries a one-year term, is largely ceremonial and customarily is rotated. But Mrs. Hederman, the first woman elected to the post, was such a popular mayor that she sought a second term, saying she wanted to see the millennium festivities out.
But the 25 city councilors of Briscoe’s Fianna Fail party, plus three from small parties, tipped the balance against her.
The Briscoes, something of a dynasty among Ireland’s 2,000-member Jewish population, have served Fianna Fail in Parliament without interruption since 1927.
Ben Briscoe was elected to the Dail in 1965, taking over the Dublin seat his father held until his death. He is one three Jews in the 166-member parliament.
″This is one of the proudest moments of my life,″ he said after the votes were counted making him lord mayor.