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Dublin: 9 °C Monday 25 May, 2020

Here's when by-elections for two empty Dáil seats are set to take place

The two votes are likely to take place before the Budget in October.

Luke 'Ming' Flanagan's election to the European Parliament has triggered a by-election in Roscommon-South Leitrim.
Luke 'Ming' Flanagan's election to the European Parliament has triggered a by-election in Roscommon-South Leitrim.
Image: PA Archive/Press Association Images

THE GOVERNMENT LOOKS set to move the writs for by-elections in Dublin South-West and Roscommon-South Leitrim as soon as the Dáil returns next month.

Both votes are likely to take place on the same day and before the Budget on 14 October. Speculation on the ground in both constituencies is that the by-elections will be held on Friday, 10 October.

The vacancies arose in May after Fine Gael’s Brian Hayes (Dublin South-West) and the independent Luke ‘Ming’ Flanagan (Roscommon-South Leitrim) were elected to the European Parliament meaning they automatically and immediately vacated their seats in Leinster House.

By law both by-elections must be held within six months of the seats becoming vacant with November the last possible month that they could take place.

However the government is likely to push for them to take place before the Budget on 14 October meaning that the writs would need to be moved as soon as the Dáil returns on 17 September.

By law polling day must be between the 18th and 25th day (excluding public holidays, Good Friday and Sundays) after the writ has been issued.

Neither of the two coalition parties are expected to win the seats with Sinn Féin the favourite to win in Dublin South-West and Fianna Fáil or a ‘Ming’-backed independent tipped in Roscommon-South Leitrim.

Runners and riders: Here’s who’s vying to take Ming’s old seat in the upcoming by-election

Runners and riders update: Here’s who’s vying to take Brian Hayes’ vacant Dáil seat

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Hugh O'Connell

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