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'Virtual' election site for expats attracts votes from all over the globe

Around 1,300 Irish emigrants have already voted in the symbolic online poll at

MORE THAN 2,500 Irish citizens abroad have registered for an online ‘general election’ – and around 1,300 have already voted.

The website is allowing emigrants to have their say in Election 2011. As Irish people living outside the country are not permitted to vote in the upcoming general election, the website aims to highlight this disenfranchisement. Voting opened on Tuesday and will close at noon GMT on Tuesday.

Founder of, Brian Reynolds, said that he hoped to register about 5,000 votes from ex-pats before the virtual poll closed. He also said that the site and its associated Facebook page had received 60,000 visits from 114 countries in the past nine days.

Ex-pats in the UK, the USA, Austria, Canada and Germany have been most active in casting their votes, he told today. The purpose of the website was to be a symbolic protest against the exclusion of Irish people living abroad from the electoral register here. It also gives the emigrants a chance to register their support for their favourite candidates – even though their vote won’t count towards the final tally on February 25.

Visitors who wish to vote have to submit their email and passport information to cast their vote. estimates that there are 3.1 million Irish passport holders and 800,000 Irish-born citizens living overseas.

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