Independent Senator Averil Power has been eliminated from the Dublin Bay North count.
After a recount of Ms Power’s votes and those of the candidates ahead of her in the election, there had been no material difference to the result and she was eliminated.
Count staff will now distribute Ms Power’s 7,668 votes. It is thought likely that this will bring Fianna Fáil’s Seán Haughey over the line to election.
Ms Power sought the recount after the 12th count when the difference between her vote and that of Independent Tommy Broughan was 67 with Mr Broughan ahead. She was the next candidate to be eliminated.
Outgoing Fine Gael Minister Richard Bruton is the only candidate elected so far in the five-seat constituency.
Ms Power said she was delighted with the campaign which had been built “from scratch over the last few months and came within a few votes of Tommy Broughan who has been a TD for this area for 25 years”.
Speaking after deputy returning officer Declan Hayes had declared her exclusion, Ms Power said she was “incredibly proud of that performance. I’m really grateful to the more than 7,000 people who gave me their vote and to my incredible campaign team.”
She said she did not regret seeking the recount. “I think it was important for all of us to make sure that the vote was correct. There were over 74,000 votes in the constituency. Before we started the recount there were 67 between myself and Tommy. It’s now down to about 40 so it has moved.
“There have been about 100 votes that moved back and forth between the various candidates that could yet change the result between other people who are currently still in the race.”
Everyone wanted the reassurance that the initial counts had been carried out correctly, she added.
“This constituency could yet come down to somebody winning or losing a seat on the basis of a dozen or so votes and I think it’s shocking that more than 150 votes correctly cast, had come to nothing.”
She said she had not decided if she would run for the Seanad. She wanted to reflect on the outcome.
Mr Haughey is likely to be elected through transfers from Ms Power.
Sinn Féin's Denise Mitchell is expected to take the third seat.
A Sinn Féin/Labour tally suggesting Mr Broughan might move ahead of Labour candidate Aodhán Ó Ríordáin for the fourth seat was later deemed unreliable because the tally was too small.
Mr Lyons, Mr Broughan, Mr Ó Ríordáin and Independent Finian McGrath remain in the battle for the fourth and fifth seats.
Currently Mr O Riordain is in fourth place on 8,547 votes, with Mr McGrath on 8,069.
Mr Lyons is on 7,760 votes and Mr Broughan has 7,733 votes.