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Wednesday 6 December 2023 Dublin: 4°C
Niall Carson/PA Images

As it happened: Sinn Féin surge across the country as just under half of Dáil seats filled

The results came in from around the country as Sinn Féin’s support spiked this general election.

THE COUNTING HAS been happening all day across the country, with 531 candidates hoping to fill 159 seats in the 33rd Dáil.

Here’s some of the things you need to know:

We’ll be with you all evening with the updates as they happen.

Sean Murray here and I’ll be with you till the bitter end this evening (or whenever all the count centres close for the night).

Need to know when we should be getting the results in? They’ll start coming in thick and fast from around 5pm onwards. Here’s a piece on when we can expect what.

And we have our first TD in the 33rd Dáil.

It’s Sinn Féin’s Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire.

He topped the poll in Cork South Central ahead of Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin and Fine Gael minister Simon Coveney.

He told PA: “I’m delighted, absolutely delighted, it’s a huge mandate that we’ve got. We haven’t expect this kind of vote but when you see this is replicated across the state there is an enormous appetite for change.

“There are thousands of young people out there who don’t have any prospect of having a home of their own, and for them and countless others, they saw in our policies a radical alternative, and they voted for it in numbers, true in Cork and across the state. We want the opportunity now to implement out solutions.”

We have reporters at count centres around the country.

One of them is Cónal Thomas who’s at the RDS in Dublin.

His piece here on “the story so far” there is well worth a read.

black and tans 1

10441 Mary Lou McDonald Leah Farrell / Leah Farrell / /

Mary Lou McDonald caused quite the media scrum when she arrived at the RDS earlier.

She said that “Sinn Fein went to the people and we convinced them in very, very large numbers that we are the alternative, that we are the vehicle for change”.


And we have our second TD. Another Sinn Féin candidate.

Johnny Guirke elected on the first count in Meath West.

This is a tight three-seater in Meath West.

Fine Gael’s Damien English should do well on transfers. And he’ll need them if he’s to keep his seat, with Aontú leader Peadar Tóibín and Fianna Fáil’s Shane Cassells currently in 2nd and 3rd place.

meath west

1280 Eoin O Brion

To the surprise of absolutely no one, Sinn Féin’s Eoin Ó Broin is elected on the first count in Dublin Mid West.

His running mate Mark Ward is also expected to take a seat in the four-seater.

We’ve a first count in Dun Laoghaire.

No one’s hit the quota yet, but independent John Waters has been eliminated.

Fianna Fáil look in trouble to get a seat, but Fine Gael look good for two seats.

dun laoghaire 1

dublin mid west

Solidarity-PBP’s Gino Kenny looks in trouble to retain his seat in Dublin Mid West.

Along with two Sinn Féin, it’s likely Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael will win the remaining seats.

He tweet this earlier:

My colleague Nicky Ryan summing up the mood here in HQ this afternoon.

Our reporter Ceimin Burke is out in Galway for the counts there.

He’s been talking to independent Noel Grealish who looks set to retain his seat.

Grealish has been saying his track record as a TD is the reason for his success and not his high profile opposition to the Direct Provision Centre in Oughterard.

If I had to go with my gut feeling, I’d have said Ó Broin definitely wasn’t the type to have his supporters lift him on their shoulders when he won the seat. 

dublin west

We have a first count coming in for Dublin West. It’s Taoiseach Leo Varadkar’s constituency. 

And Sinn Féin’s Paul Donnelly is elected on the first count! He easily exceeds the quota  of 8,726 by almost 4,000 votes.

Leo Varadkar hasn’t exceeded the quota. He gets 8,478 first preference votes.

Labour’s Joan Burton, meanwhile, looks set to lose her seat. Peter Casey, meanwhile, who ran here and in Donegal, got 495 votes.

general-election-ireland-2020 Yui Mok / PA Images Yui Mok / PA Images / PA Images

After weeks of saying that he absolutely, unequivocally, would never in a million years go into coalition with Sinn Féin, here’s what Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin has been saying down in Cork.

He said: “The election result has happened, we will listen to people, we have listened to the people, they have voted in the main for three main parties. There’s other parties like the Greens doing well and independents.

“That said, one’s policies and one’s principles don’t change overnight, and there are serious policy issues and for any government to sustain into the future. There has to be a coherent sustainable programme for government that can be implemented and delivered.

“There is significant incompatibility in terms of the policy platforms of ourselves and Sinn Fein. We just have to put that marker down. People have one good feat and will win well in terms of different constituencies, I respect that, I acknowledge that, but our policies, our positions and principles haven’t changed overnight or in 24 hours.”


Here’s the moment earlier when Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire became the first TD elected to the 33rd Dáil. / YouTube

Back to Galway now, and here’s some more of what Noel Grealish has been telling our reporter Ceimin Burke.

An opinion poll for TG4 had predicted he could’ve been in trouble with his seat.

“That poll motivated the team. It got us motivated more going out on doors and we did a very intensive, personal campaign in the east side of the city and in the city.

“I believe there might be a casualty in a senior Fine Gael TD, I’m sorry to hear that but politics is a tough game, rough and tumble. There’s winners and there’s losers but I’d like to be in the winners enclosure.”

We have a first count in the hotly contested Dublin Bay South. The quota is 7,919.

Green Party leader Eamon Ryan has topped the poll and been elected with 8,888 votes.

Housing minister Eoghan Murphy has gotten 6,346 first preference votes while his party colleague Kate O’Connell could be in trouble with 4,624.

Chris Andrews is in the mix and looks set to win a seat for Sinn Féin with 6,361 first preference votes but Fianna Fáil’s Jim O’Callaghan is trailing with 5,474 votes.

Here were the scenes when Ryan was declared elected. The Greens are hoping to reach double figures and their party leader getting re-elected is a good start.

Our reporter Conor McCrave is in the Meath East centre for us. 

And it’s looking like bad news coming for Minister for Social Protection Regina Doherty.

Here’s the national picture so far.

The Fianna Fáil one is Sean Ó Fearghaíl, the outgoing Ceann Comhairle who is automatically re-elected.

national picture

My colleague Michelle Hennessy just passed this on to me, going through the photo archives for Sinn Féin content.

What on earth was going on here?

sinn-fein-new-meps Laura Hutton / Laura Hutton / /

Sinn Féin’s Mairead Farrell looking good to take a seat in Galway West.

When she arrived at the count centre, the returning officer sparked a warning that the counting would cease if the cheering didn’t stop.

We have a first count in Wexford coming in. The quota is 12,513.

Sinn Féin’s Johnny Mythen – who lost his council seat last year – has absolutely romped home. The Comeback Kid got over 18,000 first preference votes. He’s Sinn Fein’s 5th TD.

Labour leader Brendan Howlin is short of the quota on 9,223

Fianna Fáil’s James Browne and Malcolm Byrne are in the mix for a seat with 8,058 and 6,145 respectively. 

Fine Gael ministers Michael D’Arcy (6,472) and Paul Kehoe (6,337) are also in the running but it’s all to play for in the five-seater.

Verona Murphy, meanwhile, looks set to lose out with 5,825 first preference votes.

Fine. I’ll admit it. I was wrong.

His supporters did lift Eoin Ó Broin onto their shoulders.

Green Party leader Eamon Ryan says he’s been playing phone tag with Mary Lou McDonald.

“Yeah I got a call from Mary Lou, I missed it. I called her back, and she missed it,” he tells RTÉ.

Ah Eamon.

image (53)

Mythen’s victory for Sinn Féin in Wexford really is stunning.

Now we have a count coming in Meath East. All eyes here were on Minister Regina Doherty who’s in danger of losing her seat.

The quota is 10,487.

Thomas Byrne gets 6,039 for Fianna Fáil.

Fine Gael’s Regina Doherty gets only 4,180 first preference votes. She could be the first big government scalp in this election. 

Her party colleague Helen McEntee gets 7,691.

Sinn Féin’s Darren O’Rourke is just short of the quota on 10,223.

It’s looking very likely Regina has lost her seat. 

Another Sinn Féin win.

This time it’s Dessie Ellis in Dublin North West. He’s exceeded the quota by over 6,000 votes.

This is happening everywhere – SF candidates easily exceeding the quota. 

They’ll surely be regretting not running more candidates now.

And another one.

Pat Buckley has won a seat for Sinn Féin in Cork East. 

Danny Healy-Rae looks good to retain his seat in Kerry.

Here’s what he’s been saying to Virgin Media News.

Here’s the moment Dessie Ellis was re-elected for Dublin North West.

Away from the election, an orange weather warning has just been issued for six counties.

And we have another Sinn Féin TD.

Kathleen Funchion is elected on the first count in Carlow-Kilkenny.

This is crazy stuff. David Cullinane has topped the poll in Waterford for Sinn Féin.

He got almost double the quota.

Double. The. Quota. 

Here’s a video from the local radio station WLR.

It’s a lot more fun than first past the post anyway. 

I’m typing variations of “Sinn Féin candidate elected” every few minutes. The results are coming in thick and fast now.

Brian Stanley has just been elected in Laois Offaly. 

And Mary Lou McDonald has been elected in Dublin Central. 

The Sinn Féin leader easily beat the quota and is elected with a huge surplus.

There’ll be an almighty fight for the remaining three seats in this constituency.

Another count. 

This time from Cork North Central. 

Thomas Gould has passed the quota. 

Another win for Sinn Féin. 

Solidarity-PBP’s Mick Barry looks in trouble to retain his seat. 

My colleague Rónán Duffy has this piece here on why Cork North Central is one of the more fascinating constituencies.

cork north central

And here’s the picture in the four-seater Dublin Central.

Fine Gael’s Paschal Donohoe looks good to get a seat.

Transfers from Mary Lou McDonald will be crucial. Indications are that independent Christy Burke could do well from these transfers.

dublin central

And here’s a look again at the national picture. 

Sinn Féin storming ahead. A long way to go, obviously.

national picture 2

More from Ceimin Burke now out in Galway.

Sinn Fein’s Mairead Farrell has said the government’s housing record was a key factor in the campaign.

“That’s government policy,” she said. “For nine years they didn’t build a single public house in Galway city. That has repercussions.”

We’re nearing a result in Galway East.

Independent Sean Canney, Sinn Féin’s Louis O’Hara and Ciarán Cannon leading the way right now.

Fianna Fáil’s Anne Rabbitte will be hoping to pick up transfers from the eliminated Donagh Killilea.

galway east

Fianna Fáil’s Willie O’Dea speaking to RTÉ now.

He says he’s willing to “talk to anybody”. 

Is that a sign that Fianna Fáil will be reversing its stance on going into government with Sinn Féin?

We’ve a first count in for Dublin South West.

Sean Crowe has romped home for Sinn Féin with over 20,000 votes.

Sinn Féin’s candidates are not just being elected, they’re being elected with huge surpluses.

Fine Gael’s Colm Brophy looks good to retain his seat in the constituency.

Independent Alliance junior minister Kevin Boxer Moran has told RTÉ it’ll be a “miracle” if he keeps his seat.

Back to Dublin South West.

Independent minister Katherine Zappone looks set to lose her seat. 

Solidarity-People Before Profit’s Paul Murphy appears to be hanging on for a seat in the five-seater.

dublin south west

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar has been speaking to the press.

“In terms of coalition speculation, I made my position and the position of the Fine Gael party very clear during the campaign,” he said. 

Not giving much away… yet. 

While I’m on this liveblog, my excellent colleagues have been working on the things you need to know:

More from Varadkar now.

He told reporters that three parties have so many seats will make forming a government difficult.

Another Sinn Féin seat.

This time in Dublin Mid-West where Mark Ward has joined Eoin Ó Broin in the 33rd Dáil.

general-election-ireland-2020 Damien Storan / PA Images The Taoiseach casting his vote yesterday. Damien Storan / PA Images / PA Images

More on what Leo Varadkar had to say now.

Speaking at his count centre in Dublin, he said his party Fine Gael was “not compatible with Sinn Fein”.

“We are willing to talk to other parties about how we could form a government and give this country a government that can spend the next five years dealing with the problems that we have had to tackle for the past few years.”

Asked if he will speak to Sinn Fein leader Mary Lou McDonald after she had reportedly reached out to other parties, he said: “No, not at this stage anyway”.

He added: “She has not been in touch with me yet, we would talk on occasion. I understand she has said she is seeking to form a left-wing coalition which does not include Fianna Fail or Fine Gael.

“I am not sure that is possible on the numbers so it is going to be a number of weeks before we are in a position to form a government.”

Scenes on Fassaugh Avenue in Cabra.

Presented without further comment.

image (54) Ronan Fox Ronan Fox

We’ve a first count in Galway West.

Government chief whip Sean Kyne has an almighty battle on to keep his seat.

As we were saying earlier, Christy Burke could be in with a shot in Dublin Central on the back of Mary Lou McDonald’s transfers.

And I think we’re about to have another Sinn Féin TD…

It’s Aengus Ó Snodaigh in Dublin South Central.

He’s also got almost double the quota.

Solidarity-People Before Profit’s Bríd Smith (who’s likely to benefit from Sinn Féin transfers), Fine Gael’s Catherine Byrne and Fianna Fáil’s Catherine Ardagh in the running for the remaining seats.

The Green Party’s Patrick Costello is in the mix, but independent Joan Collins is at risk of losing her seat in the four-seater.

And here are. 

Yet more Sinn Féin TDs.

This time in Mayo. 

Rose Conway Walsh has been elected on the first count. 

So has Fine Gael’s Michael Ring. 

Ah. Shane Ross has been speaking to Newstalk.

He accepts he’s not retaining his seat in Dublin Rathdown. 

Sinn Féin’s Louise O’Reilly has retained her seat in Dublin Fingal.

Her party colleague Maurice Quinlivan has also just won a seat in Limerick City with traditional poll topper Willie O’Dea just short of the quota for Fianna Fáil. 

limerick city

Sinn Féin are almost at the number of TDs that won seats in the 2016 general election  (23) already.

national picture 3

general-election-ireland-2020 Niall Carson / PA Images Niall Carson / PA Images / PA Images

Eoghan Murphy looks set to retain his seat for Fine Gael in Dublin Bay South.

The housing minister was heckled when he arrived at the RDS.

Rónán Duffy has details of how he defended his record on housing in an RTÉ interview earlier.

Here were the jubilant scenes when Aengus Ó Snodaigh topped the poll in Dublin South Central.

Speaking to RTÉ, Leo Varadkar has again ruled out a coalition with Sinn Féin.

“This is our principled position in Fine Gael. A forced marriage would not result in a good government,” he says.

We’ve two independents taking seats.

Michael Fitzmaurice has been elected on the first count in Roscommon-Galway, with Michael Collins doing likewise in Cork South-West.

Michelle Hennessy has more details on what the Taoiseach has to say about going into government with Sinn Féin.

Varadkar said it was the position of Fine Gael that “a forced marriage would not result in a good government”. 

The loudest roar so far has to be in Cork South West when Michael Collins won the seat.

“If I could continue please,” the returning officer said, to no avail. 

Another Sinn Féin seat.

This time it’s Darren O’Rourke, elected on the second count in Meath East.

And a first count is coming in from Tipperary. 

It had been believed that the election here might not have gone ahead at all after the sudden death of candidate Marese Skehan earlier this week. She was still on the ballot and received 182 votes. 

As expected, Michael Lowry has topped the poll and has been elected to the 33rd Dáil.

Shane Ross is speaking to RTÉ Radio One.

“My own position is worse than precarious,” he says. “It’s disappointing but it’s what happens. It’s a volatile constituency.

“I was a poll topper last time and the time before. I certainly won’t be elected. That’s absolutely fine. It’s not completely unexpected.

“What will I take away? It’s been a very interesting four years. We’ve achieved a great deal… we had a huge influence on the government.”

Christina Finn has more from the RDS.

She’s hearing there was no slap down of Sinn Féiners for the outburst of the the song Come Out Ye Black and Tans this morning.

“The team were just told to calm it down as it was early in the day and shouldn’t have been getting ahead of themselves. Also told the song was a chart topper.”

Right, so.

Here’s Aengus Ó Snodaigh getting a smooch from his wife Aisling after he was elected to Dublin South Central.

1438 Aengus O Snodaigh Leah Farrell / Leah Farrell / /

Shane Ross has been excluded in Dublin Rathdown.

The transport minister has lost his seat.

With Ross eliminated, Catherine Martin has won a seat in Dublin Rathdown for the Greens.

Fine Gael’s Josepha Madigan and Neale Richmond are looking good to take the remaining seats there, but where Shane Ross’ transfers go will be interesting.

Sorcha Nic Cormaic is currently in fourth place there for Sinn Féin.

dublin rathdown

RTÉ has Twitter accounts for each constituency.

This is an enjoyable update from Donegal.

Our political correspondent Christina Finn has been talking to Sinn Féin’s Ó Snodaigh.

He says: “It would be a bad day for democracy if any party was to reject the sizeable vote that was cast.”

We have a first count in Kildare South.

No one elected there.

Patricia Ryan – who faced criticism for going on holiday during the campaign – is closest to the quota and looks certain to take a seat. 

It’s a family affair on RTÉ at the minute.

Catherine Martin – elected for the Greens – is standing next to her husband Francis Duffy who’s running in Dublin South West.

Duffy reckons he’s got a decent shout of getting in there.

Also live was Vincent Martin who hopes to be in the mix for a seat in Kildare North.

Independent Michael Fitzmaurice has a statement in after retaining his seat in Roscommon-Galway.

He’s suggesting that everyone should come together to try form a government.

“The mathematics that are showing up at the moment on a national level may be problematic when it comes to forming a government, but it is my view that there is a responsibility on all of us who are given a mandate by the people to go into the negotiations and make an honest effort to reach an agreement,” he says. 

“I hope that nobody ducks and dives if they are given that opportunity.

Okay, here’s every elected so far:

Sinn Féin

  • Kathleen Funcion – Carlow-Kilkenny
  • Pat Buckley – Cork East
  • Thomas Gould – Cork North Central
  • Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire – Cork South Central
  • Mary Lou McDonald – Dublin Central
  • Louise O’Reilly – Dublin Fingal
  • Eoin Ó Broin – Dublin Mid-West
  • Mark Ward – Dublin Mid-West
  • Dessie Ellis – Dublin North-West
  • Aengus Ó Snodaigh – Dublin South Central
  • Seán Crowe – Dublin South-West
  • Paul Donnelly – Dublin West
  • Brian Stanley – Laois-Offaly
  • Maurice Quinlivan – Limerick City
  • Imelda Munster – Louth
  • Ruairí Ó Murchú – Louth
  • Rose Conway-Walsh – Mayo
  • Darren O’Rourke – Meath East
  • Johnny Guirke – Meath West
  • David Cullinane – Waterford
  • Johnny Mythen – Wexford

Green Party

  • Eamon Ryan – Dublin Bay South
  • Catherine Martin – Dublin Rathdown

Fine Gael

  • Michael Ring – Mayo


  • Michael Fitzmaurice – Roscommon-Galway
  • Michael Collins – Cork South West
  • Michael Lowry – Tipperary

We’ve a first count in from Dublin Bay North, with the quota of 11,935.

Yet another seat for Sinn Féin.

Denise Mitchell has topped the poll with 21,344.

Fine Gael’s Richard Bruton is just short of the quota on 11,156.

Others in the mix for a seat include Fianna Fáil’s Sean Haughey and Green David Healy.

Irish Times journalist Conor Gallagher seems to be enjoying his time in Wexford.

You couldn’t make it up. 

Another thing to note from Dublin Bay South.

Catherine Noone – whose “autistic” comment about Leo Varadkar lead to criticism on the campaign trail – won’t be getting a seat.

A first count from Wicklow – the constituency with the highest number of candidates.

Guess what? 

Sinn Féin have won a seat.

John Brady has exceeded the quota and has retained his seat. 

Here’s the picture in Wicklow.

Fianna Fáil’s Stephen Donnelly has a battle on his hands to keep his seat.


A first count from Kildare North but no one has a quota.

Social Democrats co-leader Catherine Murphy is on top.

Sinn Féin’s Reada Cronin looking good to get a seat.

kildare north

Independent Sean Canney has been elected in Galway East.

Dublin Central, meanwhile, is heating up. 

Paschal Donohoe has arrived at the RDS.

He says that he expects Fine Gael to get in the high 30s in terms of seats.

On Dublin Central heating up, here’s how close it is.

Reminder: three of these will get a seat.

dublin central 1

Solidarity-People Before Profit’s Bríd Smith – after benefitting hugely from Sinn Féin transfers of over 4,000 votes – has been re-elected in Dublin South Central. 

She’s delighted.

The Tanaiste Simon Coveney has again ruled out any coalition with Sinn Fein.

“I’ve said many times that I just don’t believe that the policy platform that Sinn Fein are outlining, and the approach and the policies that Sinn Fein and Fine Gael have committed to are compatible,” he said.

“I don’t think that government would work, I think the Taoiseach described it as a marriage that will be forced rather than one that will work.

“I think we have responsibility to follow through on the commitments that we made during this campaign and we’ll do that.

“I’ve always said our priority is to try and form a government that didn’t involve Fianna Fail or Sinn Fein but that clearly – the numbers don’t look like that’s going to be possible.”

Sinn Féin already has as many TDs as it won in the 2016 general election.

Sinn Fein

Bríd Smith has thanked her team after being re-elected in Dublin South Central.

She got over 4,000 in transfers from Sinn Féin.

With the party winning huge surpluses across the country, how those surpluses get distributed will be key to some seats.

The Green Party’s Ossian Smyth has won a seat in Dun Laoghaire.

It’s incredibly tight there with Fianna Fáil’s Cormac Devlin still in the hunt for the final seat.

dun laoghaire 2

Fine Gael’s Paschal Donohoe has admitted there’s an appetite for change in Ireland that his party needs to “reflect on and respond back to”. 

Simon Coveney has just told RTÉ News “it’s very unlikely” that the next government will be formed through a confidence and supply agreement. 

Here’s Rónán Duffy with more from independent Kevin Boxer Moran who looks set to lose his eat.

Moran has said he has been “let down” by the people in Longford-Westmeath as he admitted it will take “a miracle” to save his seat.

boxer moran

Rather bizarrely, Leo Varadkar still hasn’t been elected.

They’re into a fifth count now in Dublin West. He’s just shy of the quota.

Gerry Adams has been having a go at Simon Coveney for ruling out going into government with Sinn Féin.

Another Sinn Féin TD has been elected.

It’s Martin Kenny in Sligo-Leitrim and he got in on the first count.

Fianna Fáil x2 and an independent looking good for the other three seats.

sligo leitrim

There are still a few constituencies that have yet to provide a first count.

They are Longford-Westmeath, Kerry, Donegal and Cavan-Monaghan.

And Taoiseach Leo Varadkar has finally been elected to the 33rd Dáil.

He’s elected on the fifth count in Dublin West.

And with Varadkar getting a seat in Dublin West, Labour’s Joan Burton has been eliminated.

joan burton 1

It’s a ding-dong battle in Galway West as Fianna Fáil’s Eamon Ó Cuív has retaken the lead from Sinn Féin’s Mairead Farrell.

Fine Gael’s Sean Kyne still looking like he’ll miss out on a seat. 

We’ve a first count in from Longford-Westmeath.

You’ve guessed it! Sinn Féin has won a seat.

Sorca Clarke topped the poll.

Fianna Fáil’s Robert Troy and Joe Flaherty looking good for two seats. Kevin Boxer Moran has a fight on his hands for the final seat with some Fine Gaelers to be eliminated that’ll likely transfer heavily to each other.

longford westmeath

And Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin has also finally been elected.

Hours and hours after Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire was the first TD in the country elected in Cork South Central, the Fianna Fáil leader has joined him on the sixth count.

Independent councillor Christy Burke is right in there with a shout in Dublin Central.

But he’s taking nothing for granted.

As expected, Fianna Fáil’s Willie O’Dea has taken a seat in Limerick city.

Sinn Féin has taken TWO seats in the first count in Donegal.

Pearse Doherty and Padráig Mac Lochlainn will be in the 33rd Dáil.

We’ve our first constituency completely filled.

It’s Galway East. Joining independent Sean Canney are Fine Gael’s Ciarán Cannon and Fianna Fáil’s Anne Rabbitte. 

Just losing out is Sinn Féin’s 22-year-old candidate Louis O’Hara.

galway east 1

Cork North-West also has a full set of TDs.

And it’s the same three as in 2016.

Returning are Fine Gael’s Michael Creed and Fianna Fáil’s Michael Moynihan and Aindrias Moynihan.

cork north west

Guess who’s after getting in in Kerry?

The first count is in there and Michael Healy-Rae has been re-elected.

Sinn Féin have also won a seat with Pa Daly also exceeding the quota. 

Here’s the picture in Kerry.

There should be two Healy-Raes in the next Dáil, and Fine Gael’s Brendan Griffin looks likely to retain his seat. 

Two Fianna Fáil candidates are slugging it out for the last seat.


There have been 48 candidates elected so far.

28 of them are from Sinn Féin.

national picture 4

This is interesting. 

We’ve been saying that where the huge Sinn Féin transfers go could play a big role in tight seats.

Solidarity-People Before Profit have been the chief beneficiaries so far.

Most counts have been suspended at the RDS in Dublin until 10am tomorrow morning.

9a01c0fe-b1ca-42ad-be95-c4d3a6bab992 Yui Mok / PA Images Yui Mok / PA Images / PA Images

Micheál Martin has been talking about going into government with Sinn Féin again.

“I think people are jumping the gun in terms of interpreting what I said today, as I said one doesn’t change one’s policies and principles overnight,” he said.

“That said, today’s a day to let the election happen, let the election unfold, let people enjoy their elections and so on. In the cold light of day, tomorrow and the day after, we will assess where we are, because I am not taking anything for granted because I know that some people are saying we could be anything from 40 to 46, I have been in touch with colleagues, there is a lot now riding on transfers and distributions … places like Wexford and Donegal.

“I am very conscious our first priority is to assess how we are doing and how we’ll actually do, we’ll know all that tomorrow.”

Michael Healy-Rae is talking to RTÉ News.

Asked if his brother Danny will get back in, he said “please god, yes”.

He’s feeling confident, and is happy to play a role with whoever forms the government in the next Dáil.

“We’re now faced with a situation of working with whatever’s there,” he says, adding that he and his brother will do their best for the people of Kerry.

Dublin Central is on a knife edge! And they’re going home now!

We have a full set of TDs in Dublin West.

Joining Sinn Féin’s Paul Donnelly and Fine Gael’s Leo Varadkar is Fianna Fáil’s Jack Chambers and Green Party’s Roderic O’Gorman.

Ruth Coppinger, for Solidarity-People Before Profit, has lost her seat.

dublin west 1

Another major government scalp.

Fine Gael’s Mary Mitchell O’Connor has lost her seat in Dún Laoghaire.

Fianna Fáil’s Cormac Devlin has snuck in ahead of her and Fine Gael’s Jennifer Carroll MacNeill has also won a seat.

Sinn Féin and Fine Gael are celebrating in Cavan-Monaghan.

Matt Carthy and Heather Humphreys have been elected on the first count.

The counting there has stopped and will continue tomorrow.

Here’s how it’s looking in Cavan Monaghan. 

Sinn Féin likely to take a seat, and definitely one for Fianna Fáil but with plenty of transfers there’s all to play for.

cavan monaghan

This is probably on par with Shane Ross in terms of a significant government loss.

Regina Doherty has been eliminated in Meath East. The Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection won’t be in the 33rd Dáil.


Dublin Rathdown has been filled, and it’s a good showing here from Fine Gael.

Neale Richmond and Josepha Madigan have been elected.

Turnout for this election is actually slightly lower than 2016, down 2.2%.

Our results centre has all the info you need to get up to speed.

So far, there are 3 constituencies  – Clare, Galway West and Kildare North – that have yet to elect a TD.

We have another full constituency.

It’s in Meath West.

Aontú’s Peadar Tóibín and Fine Gael’s Damien English have made it in.

meath west 1

Paul Murphy looks set to win a seat in Dublin South West and he’s predicting his colleague Ruth Coppinger will be back again after she lost her seat in Dublin West this evening.

Here’s a piece written by my colleague Dominic McGrath with details of Fine Gael’s major casualties this far.

regina 1

Excellent use of the phrase “chill vibes” by our reporter Ceimin Burke out in Galway West.

We finally have a TD in Kildare North and it’s Social Democrat Catherine Murphy.

kildare north 1

More on turnout now. It’s actually the lowest turnout since 2002.

Ruth Coppinger lost her seat this evening.

She’s told Newstalk that she was “extremely disappointed” to lose her seat, as she had been a socialist voice in the Dáil, raising issues like workers’ and women’s rights.

She said it was an “extremely difficult” and “quite diverse” constituency, but said S-PBP would discuss possible government formation with all the parties.

Also speaking on Newstalk, Luke ‘Ming’ Flanagan said that it wasn’t a “good evening”, when greeted on air by Susan Keogh, but it was an “absolutely brilliant evening”, because a Fine Gael or FIanna Fáil TD wouldn’t be serving in his constituency of Roscommon-Galway.


He said that based on the results so far, there would be another election in 3 months’ time.

Another count in Galway West where no candidates are elected.

Sinn Féin’s Mairead Farrell draws closer again.

general-election-ireland-2020 Yui Mok / PA Images Yui Mok / PA Images / PA Images

Tánaiste Simon Coveney has won his seat in Cork South Central on the 8th count.

And so has Fianna Fáil’s finance spokesperson Michael McGrath.

Wexford is looking incredibly competitive.

The five-seater already has Sinn Féin’s Johnny Mythen in. 

It’s anyone’s guess who’ll complete the line up. Former Fine Gael candidate Verona Murphy is proving very transfer friendly so far.


There are 62 seats filled. Not quite half way there, but a lot of count centres have given up for the night.

national picture 5

Another tight battle to win the last two seats in Cork South West.

Holly Cairns is doing well with transfers but needs a lot more to take a seat for the Social Democrats.

Her partner Christopher O’Sullivan looks like getting in for Fianna Fáil.

cork south west

The final count of the night happening now in Galway West.

I hope Mr Burke gets a good night sleep after this.

We’ve another TD.

This time in Limerick County as Fine Gael’s Patrick O’Donovan retains his seat.


Alan-Kelly-in-2016-esque delighted.

Two more seats and Fine Gael’s Helen McEntee and Fianna Fáil’s Thomas Byrne elected in Meath East.

This is where Regina Doherty lost her seat earlier this evening. 

To show I wasn’t exaggerating, here’s a video of Patrick O’Donovan going mad when he was elected.

Another count, another one without a TD elected coming in Galway West.

Looks like they’re going to give up for the night there soon. Likely the first TD elected will be a Sinn Féin candidate. They’re just shy of 30 with 29 seats so far – already the party’s best ever performance.

Green Party’s Saoirse McHugh has just been eliminated in Mayo.

At the exact same time, an advert came on the telly featuring the song “Time to Say Goodbye”. 


We’re still counting in around a dozen constituencies, but it appears many are downing tools and planning to go at it again in the morning.

All the seats are filled in Meath. 

You’d barely know it had happened now.

As predicted, the last count of the night in Galway West hasn’t seen anyone elected. 

Sinn Féin’s Mairead Farrell is 44 short of the quota.

Here’s how the three main party leaders celebrated winning their seats earlier.

general-election-ireland-2020 Niall Carson / PA Images Niall Carson / PA Images / PA Images

general-election-ireland-2020 Yui Mok / PA Images Yui Mok / PA Images / PA Images

general-election-ireland-2020 Liam McBurney / PA Images Liam McBurney / PA Images / PA Images

The rhetoric from Fianna Fáil about Sinn Féin has been softening all day.

Pat the Cope Gallagher is on course to win a seat in Donegal.

He’s been telling RTÉ News he believes that all parties “should enter into discussions with each other”. 

Just checking in on the amount spent by political parties on Facebook in the days before the election.

In the seven days before polling day, Fine Gael spent just over €60,000 on adverts on the social media platform while Fianna Fáil spent €31,935.

Sinn Féin spent €11,335 but then they were the most popular throughout the campaign on Facebook.

RTÉ have shown a breakdown of who got the most first preference votes.

A good graphic illustrating Sinn Féin’s dominance in this election.


Solidarity-PBP’s Gino Kenny admitted defeat earlier in the day in Dublin Mid West.

He ain’t gone yet.

And we have another TD declared.

Fianna Fáil’s John McGuinness is back in in Carlow-Kilkenny.

Still plenty to play for in this constituency, with Sinn Féin’s Kathleen Funchion already secured.

Fianna Fáil look good for another seat with Jennifer Murnane O’Connor and Bobby Aylward also in with a shout. 

carlow kilkenny 1

A full result in Limerick County now.

Independent Richard O’Donoghue takes the final seat ahead of Sinn Féin’s Séighin Ó Ceallaigh.

More results coming in from Mayo.

After Saoirse McHugh was eliminated, her votes were redistributed.

It’s another tight race here with only two seats left up for grabs. 

  • Dara Calleary (FF) – 11,130 votes
  • Lisa Chambers (FF) – 8,363
  • Alan Dillon (FG) – 7,648
  • Michelle Mulherin (FG) – 7,427

Mulherin is eliminated and we have to see where her transfers go now. 

With 67 of the 160 seats filled, here’s how we’re looking.

national picture 6

RTÉ has stopped its TV coverage but we’re still going here at HQ.

Gráinne Ní Aodha has details here on the results in Tipperary with a very familiar face taking the first seat.

michael lowry

In non-election related news, Brad Pitt has won his first acting Oscar – best supporting actor for Once Upon a Time in Hollywood.

A quick straw poll of those of us still here says it’s deserved. 

They’re still counting in Cork South West.

Fine Gael’s Tim Lombard benefitting hugely from transfers with two seats left up for grabs.

  • Tim Lombard (FG) – 8,557 votes
  • Christopher O’Sullivan (FF) – 7,228
  • Holly Cairns (SD) – 6,593
  • Paul Hayes (SF) – 5,542

Margaret Murphy O’Mahony’s (FF) 4,863 votes are now set to be distributed.

Ah here now!

They were still counting in Roscommon Galway, but now the power’s gone out.

Think it’s time to go home.

Need to catch up with all that’s going on?

This 1 minute 50 second long video will do just that. / YouTube

Still going in Waterford too.

Fine Gael look in trouble but they’ll be hoping the transfers are kind.

They’re in the dark but they’re still counting in Roscommon-Galway, Newstalk is reporting.

And we’re gonna call that a wrap for this evening.

They’re still counting in several places but with less than half of seats filled, tomorrow (today, I suppose) is going to be a momentous day. 

Thanks for joining us throughout the evening, and check back in tomorrow where we’ll have all the breaking news, insights and analysis from #GE2020.

I’m off to get some sleep. Bye, all!

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