Tight race for third Dublin seat


The latest tallies show the Socialist Party’s Joe Higgins, Sinn Féin’s Mary-Lou McDonald and Fianna Fáil’s Eoin Ryan facing a tight battle for the third seat in the Dublin European constituency.

A tally from RTE shows Fine Gael’s Gay Mitchell on 23.3 per cent of the votes and Labour’s Prionsias De Rossa on 20.9 per cent.

Mr Higgins was on 13.45 per cent, slightly ahead of outgoing MEPS Mr Ryan (13.25 per cent) and Ms McDonald (13.1 per cent).

Meanwhile, Libertas candidate in the North West European constituency Declan Ganley has polled much better than expected, according to latest tallies.

Reports from Co Sligo show he has secured up to 30 per cent of the vote in some areas. In Co Roscommon, he looks to have secured at least 15 per cent of the vote. In Galway city, indications are that he has won over 24 per cent of the vote, ahead of Independent Marian Harkin, who looks set to top the poll in the constituency.

Fine Gael’s Jim Higgins also polled well, with reports showing him well ahead of Fianna Fáil’s Pat ‘The Cope’ Gallagher.

In the South, Fianna Fáil’s Brian Crowley leads, according to tallies, with Fine Gael’s Sean Kelly in second place. Labour’s Senator Alan Kelly, Independent Kathy Sinnott and Fianna Gael’s Colm Burke are fighting for the third seat.

In the East constituency, Labour’s Nessa Childers is trailing Fine Gael's Mairead McGuinness, tallies show. Fianna Fáil’s Liam Aylward and John Paul Phelan of Fine Gael are vying for third place.

According to an exit poll of voters in the European elections, 30 per cent said they had give Fine Gael their first preference in the European vote (up two points on 2004), Fianna Fail got 23 per cent (down 6.5 per cent). Labour stood at 16 per cent (up 5.5 per cent), while Sinn Féin was slightly up on five years ago at 12 per cent. The Green Party was on two per cent and Others on 17 per cent in the exit poll.

Counting of votes in the European election gets underway tomorrow.