Noel Whelan: Scale of SF’s election collapse not fully appreciated

Loss of 78 council seats dramatically depletes the party’s officer corps on the ground

Mary Lou McDonald: the Sinn Féin  leader will be deeply concerned by  the party’s  poor performance in both the European and local elections. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Mary Lou McDonald: the Sinn Féin leader will be deeply concerned by the party’s poor performance in both the European and local elections. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

One of the difficulties with the news prominence given to exit polls is that, over the course of an election count weekend, the most important and enduring outcomes of an election can get lost. When exit polls get it wrong, misimpressions are left, perhaps forever, in the minds of many voters about what actually happened in the election.

Even now three weeks later, the true extent of the party shifts reflected in the local elections are still under-reported.

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