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First European election result confirms 'green wave' in Dublin - but no MEPs elected after seventh count

The first results from the European elections are in.

Ciarán Cuffe of the Green Party was favourite to top the poll in Dublin.
Ciarán Cuffe of the Green Party was favourite to top the poll in Dublin.
Image: Leah Farrell/RollingNews.ie

Updated May 27th 2019, 12:00 AM

THE GREEN PARTY’S Ciarán Cuffe has topped the poll in Dublin in the European elections, making his election a foregone conclusion even as counting continues. 

Cuffe received 63,849 votes on the first count, giving him 17.5% of the vote – below the 23% he was projected to receive in RTÉ/TG4 exit poll, which was conducted by Red C and had a 4% margin of error. 

After the seventh count and with several candidates eliminated, Cuffe is still top of the poll. 

The story of the election so far has been the “green surge” – across the country the Green Party has made significant gains in the local elections and early indications suggested that the party could see three candidates elected to the European Parliament. 

The first count put former Tánaiste and Fine Gael TD Frances Fitzgerald on 16.23% of the vote. She was followed by Barry Andrews of Fianna Fáil, who received 14.1% of first preferences.

While Cuffe did not achieve the quota on the first count, his election is a foregone conclusion. While it now seems likely that Fitzgerald and Andrews will take two of the seats, the identity of the other MEP for Dublin will remain an open question well into tomorrow and possibility beyond.

Independents4Change TD Clare Daly, who was on 12% in the exit poll, received 11.6% in first preferences. As of the seventh count, Daly is currently placed fourth behind Cuffe, Fitzgerald and Andrews.

MARY LOU 8L5A9622_90571847 Sinn Féin's Lynn Boylan, the only sitting MEP in Dublin, faces a long struggle to retain her seat. Source: Leah Farrell/RollingNews.ie

Early indications suggested that Sinn Féin MEP Lynn Boylan was in danger of losing her seat, with the exit polling putting her on 10%. In 2014, Boylan had topped the poll in Dublin. Tonight’s results bear those fears out, putting her on 10.8% of first preferences.

“It’s a cruel game,” Boylan told RTÉ this evening after the fifth count, admitting that the reaction on the doors was different compared to 2014. “We have to take it on the chin, we didn’t motivate our voters to go out and vote,” she said.

Social Democrats councillor Gary Gannon received 5.6%, while former Labour minister Alex White got 5% of first preferences. Fine Gael candidate Mark Durkan, a former leader of the SDLP, received 4.5%. Both White and Durkan conceded the election earlier this evening. 

Dublin was the sole European constituency expected to have any results this evening. Results from Ireland South and Midlands North-West are expected to come in tomorrow, although it might be mid-week before we know the final shake-up of seats. 

Ireland-wide projections from the European Parliament, released earlier this evening, put Fine Gael on 4 seats, with 29% of the vote. The Greens were placed on 15%, which would give them two seats. 

Fianna Fáil, who have enjoyed success today in the local elections, were projected to have 15% of the vote and gain one seat. Mick Wallace and Clare Daly, the European Parliament figures estimate, could both end up being elected. 

Sinn Féin, if the figures prove correct, would only achieve two seats with 13% of the vote.

Counting will continue in the RDS tomorrow. 

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