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Dublin: 4°C Wednesday 19 January 2022

It's all over: All 158 seats in the 32nd Dáil have now been filled

But what happens next?

Source: TheJournal.ie/YouTube

ALL 158 SEATS in the 32nd Dáil have been filled following the completion of the count in Longford-Westmeath.

The election of Fine Gael’s Peter Burke and the return of Labour’s Willie Penrose means the make-up of the Dáil is complete, although the outcome in terms of forming a government remains far from clear.

With 50, Fine Gael has the most number of seats but this is 26 fewer than it secured in the 2011 general election and 16 less than it had going into last month’s election.

While the party polled an average of 30% in the final opinion polls of the election campaign it commanded only 26% of first preference votes nationally.

The result has been far worse for its coalition partner Labour which has returned just seven TDs. While this secures speaking rights it is 30 less than it got elected in 2011 and 26 less than it had going into this election.


Labour’s 7% share of the vote follows a succession of opinion polls that placed the party in single digits, with one putting it as low as 4% in the final days of the campaign.

Fianna Fáil has had the best election result of any by more than doubling its number of TDs, with 44 elected over the course of the weekend.

As it did in the 2014 local elections, the party outperformed the opinion polls by achieving 24% of the vote compared to many pre-election polls that had it at round 20%.

Sinn Féin has added nine more TDs with 23 representing the party in this Dáil. The party commanded 14% of the vote, four points up on its 2011 result but slightly less than the final opinion polls.

The number of independents is 18. The newly-formed Anti-Austerity Alliance-People Before Profit party has returned six TDs while the Social Democrats have three, the same number it had going into the election.

The Greens have returned two deputies and the Independents 4 Change grouping of Clare Daly, Mick Wallace, Tommy Broughan and Joan Collins all return to the Dáil.

The final seat then is filled by Seamus Healy of the Workers and Unemployed Action group.

Read: Enda is off to Washington, but only a few ministers will get a Paddy’s Day trip

About the author:

Hugh O'Connell

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