Seamus Pattison represented Kilkenny in Dail Eireann as a TD for an unbroken 46 years. Before his retirement he was the ceremonial Father of the Dáil as the house’s longest-serving representative. A member of the Labour Party he served as Leas-Cheann Comhairle from 2002 to 2007, Ceann Comhairle from 1997 to 2002, Minister of State for Social Welfare from 1983 to 1987, and Father of the Dáil from 1995 to 2007. He was TD for the Carlow–Kilkenny constituency from 1961 to 2007 and an MEP for the Leinster constituency from 1981 to 1983. He was succesful in 12 general elections. He served as Mayor of Kilkenny on three occasions; 1967, 1976 and 1992.
In tribute President Michael D Higgins said that “Seamus served with great distinction in public life at every level.”