Normally the AOH president is considered a shoo-in for a second term after serving his first. However, on this occasion Boyle seems likely to mount a successful challenge to Meehan, who faces a very tough battle to retain his leadership.
Boyle is an elected Hibernian officer for more than 30 years and has been on the National Board of the Hibernians for the past 10 years. Currently he is vice president.
His slogan is "A Vote for Seamus is a Vote for Progress" which is proudly displayed on the AOH Division 39 website.
Boyle clearly feels Meehan is out of touch with the younger elements. His slogan also includes
the following: "Growth- Communication- Involvement-Inclusion-New Technology-New Ideas," a clear slap at Meehan's alleged lack of interest in new communications methods for the AOH.
Meehan Out of Touch Claim
BOYLE supporters have long claimed that Meehan is out of touch, but the 1,000 delegates at the Hibernian convention will give their final verdict on that.
The Boyle camp are very confident of victory, believing thy have the backing of state boards from all over the country, while Meehan, they say, has only his Massachusetts base.
Meehan, however, is a tough campaigner, a colorful character who was deeply involved in the Northern Ireland issue for many years.
In latter years, however, Meehan has been a figure of some controversy. He asked that Irish immigration reform supporters come out in favor of the Iraq war in order to win more widespread support from Hibernians, a very strange tactic indeed.
Boyle has promised to be far more hard working on that issue, which many Hibernians see as the key to the future of their organization.
Meehan, in contrast, has stayed almost entirely focused on the Northern Ireland issue, which is clearly a long way towards being resolved and is no longer a hot button issue in the community.