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Friday 3 February 2023 Dublin: 10°C
# Labour's choice
Joan Burton to be next Labour leader as counting continues, Kelly to be deputy leader
The party’s current deputy leader is expected to see off the challenge of Alex White.

Updated 2.06pm

JOAN BURTON WILL be the next leader of the Labour party with counting of postal ballots showing she will easily win the race to succeed Eamon Gilmore.

Tallies from the counting of around 3,000 postal ballots from Labour members across the country indicate Burton is likely to beat junior minister Alex White by a margin of 3 to 1. 

In the deputy leadership contest tallies show junior minister Alan Kelly leading by a clear margin which means he could take the position on the first count.

Waterford TD Ciara Conway is polling strongly, but is behind Cork TDs Michael McCarthy and Seán Sherlock respectively.

Social Protection Minister Burton is expected to see off the challenge of junior minister White to succeed Gilmore as the party leader and become Tánaiste.

Already it has emerged that Burton will hold preliminary talks with Taoiseach Enda Kenny later this evening with further discussions planned for later in the weekend.

Kelly’s election as deputy leader is likely to secure him a position at Cabinet but White’s future is unclear given he has been so clearly beaten to the leadership role.

The junior health minister harbours ambitions to be in Cabinet but may not have done enough.

Burton and Kelly are likely to meet briefly this evening but hold more substantial talks over the weekend.

The official result in the leadership race is not expected to be declared until 3.30pm with Burton holding a press conference shortly afterwards.

Counting in the deputy leadership race does not officially get under way until 3.45pm but the tallies show that junior minister Kelly will win.

A result in that contest is expected at around 5.30pm.

  • Follow @oconnellhugh for coverage from the counting centre at the Mansion House in central Dublin. 

‘Fingers still crossed’: Joan Burton feeling hopeful about Labour leadership

Read: One of these two people will be Labour leader later today. Here’s what they told us…

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