Party History

In The Beginning
Saturday 21 December 1985

The Progressive Democrats Party was founded by Des O’Malley and Mary Harney, and launched at the Party’s Head Office, 25 South Frederick Street, Dublin.

In his foundation address, Des O’Malley noted that “national morale is at an all time low”, and committed himself and the new party to “breaking the moulds of Irish politics and giving the Irish voters a new and real alternative” to the Civil War parties then dominating Irish politics.

Urging a transformation of Irish politics, he said there was “a great consensus in Ireland which favours fundamental tax reform, which favours enterprise” and he called on people, particularly young people, to join him in building “a new progressive democratic force in Irish politics” and committed the Progressive Democrats to building a New Republic.