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Election 2020

Roscommon-Galway 5th Count: Naughten elected

Denise McNamara

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Denise Naughten has declared himself willing to work with anyone in government, but believes Independents will unlikely be kingmakers in the next coalition.

The former Fine Gaeler, who topped the poll in the 2016 election, relinquished his pole position to fellow Independent Michael Fitzmaurice, securing the second seat on the fifth count after coming in second place with 8,422 first preferences.

It was a big drop for the Roscommon town politician, who had pulled over 13,000 votes in his last electoral outing.

He got 3,817 transfers from Fine Gael’s Aisling Dolan, which got him over the line. The count was suspended power was cut across the town with proceedings due to begin again at midday on Monday when Sinn Fein’s Claire Kerrane is expected to take the third and final seat.

“I was never going to have the same circumstances as the last occasion – it’s a very different election and this time round I had Orla Leydon and Aisling Dolan eating into my first preferences and in fairness Aisling seems to have rallied in the last few days, running an excellent campaign,” he told the Connacht Tribune.

“There’s a lot of anger out there and a lot of frustration.”

Number of seats: 3
Electorate: 69,598
Spoiled votes: 330
Total valid poll: 45,612
Quota: 11,404

Fifth Count
Fitzmaurice, Michael (Ind) Elected
Naughten, Denis (Ind) 8,422 +635 9057 +362 9419 + 1447 10,866  +3817  14,683
Kerrane, Clare (SF) 8,003 +319 8322 +368 8690 +712 9402  +680  10,082
Dolan, Aisling (FG) 5,466 +169 5635 +75 5710 +452 6162
Murphy Eugene (FF) 4,945 +256 5201 +180 5381 +1861 7242 +816  8058
Leyden, Orla (FF) 2,953 +171 3124 +73 3197 Eliminated
O’Donoghue, Julie (GP) 1,413 +32 1445 +165 1610 Eliminated
Hope, James (Aontu) 504  +38 542 Eliminated
Tynan, Kieran (SPBP) 422 +20 442 Eliminated
Hanley, Paul (National Party) 319  +12 331 Eliminated
Fallon, Thomas D (Ind) 88 +21 109 – Eliminated

Denis Naughten takes the second seat. Count is suspended due to powercut.
The next count will distribute Naughten’s surplus of 3,279 votes.
Resuming at midday on Monday.

 

Fourth Count
Fitzmaurice, Michael (Ind) Elected
Naughten, Denis (Ind) 8,422 +635 9057 +362 9419 + 1447 10,866
Kerrane, Clare (SF) 8,003 +319 8322 +368 8690 +712 9402
Dolan, Aisling (FG) 5,466 +169 5635 +75 5710 +452 6162
Murphy Eugene (FF) 4,945 +256 5201 +180 5381 +1861 7242
Leyden, Orla (FF) 2,953 +171 3124 +73 3197 Eliminated
O’Donoghue, Julie (GP) 1,413 +32 1445 +165 1610 Eliminated
Hope, James (Aontu) 504 +38 542 Eliminated
Tynan, Kieran (SPBP) 422 +20 442 Eliminated
Hanley, Paul (National Party) 319 +12 331 Eliminated
Fallon, Thomas D (Ind) 88 +21 109 – Eliminated
Eliminated: Aisling Dolan.
The next count is the fifth and final count.

THIRD COUNT
Fitzmaurice, Michael (Ind) Elected
Naughten, Denis (Ind) 8,422 +635 9057 +362 9419
Kerrane, Clare (SF) 8,003 +319 8322 +368 8690
Dolan, Aisling (FG) 5,466 +169 5635 +75 5710
Murphy Eugene (FF) 4,945 +256 5201 +180 5381
Leyden, Orla (FF) 2,953 +171 3124 +73 3197
O’Donoghue, Julie (GP) 1,413 +32 1445 +165 1610
Hope, James (Aontu) 504 +38 542 Eliminated
Tynan, Kieran (SPBP) 422 +20 442 Eliminated
Hanley, Paul (National Party) 319 +12 331 Eliminated
Fallon, Thomas D (Ind) 88 +21 109 – Eliminated

Nobody deemed elected. Eliminated O’Donoghue and Leydn.

SECOND COUNT
Fitzmaurice, Michael (Ind) 13,077 Elected
Naughten, Denis (Ind) 8,422 +635 9057
Kerrane, Clare (SF) 8,003 +319 8322
Dolan, Aisling (FG) 5,466 +169 5635
Murphy Eugene (FF) 4,945 +256 5201
Leyden, Orla (FF) 2,953 +171 3124
O’Donoghue, Julie (GP) 1,413 +32 1445
Hope, James (Aontu) 504 +38 542
Tynan, Kieran (SPBP) 422 +20 442
Hanley, Paul (National Party) 319 +12 331
Fallon, Thomas D (Ind) 88 +21 109

Eliminated Fallon, Hanley, Hope and Tynan

FIRST COUNT
Fitzmaurice, Michael (Ind) 13,077
Naughten, Denis (Ind) 8,422
Kerrane, Clare (SF) 8,003
Dolan, Aisling (FG) 5,466
Murphy Eugene (FF) 4,945
Leyden, Orla (FF) 2,953
O’Donoghue, Julie (GP) 1,413
Hope, James (Aontu) 504
Tynan, Kieran (SPBP) 422
Hanley, Paul (National Party) 319
Fallon, Thomas D (Ind) 88

Fitzmaurice re-elected on the first count.
Fitzmaurice’s surplus of 1,673 to be distributed.

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Election 2020

Labour fails to make up ground

Stephen Corrigan

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Galway West Labour Party candidate Niall McNelis and his wife Aideen at the Galway West count centre on Monday morning.

On the canvass three weeks ahead of the election, Cllr Níall McNelis told the Galway City Tribune he believed Labour’s time “on the bold step” had come to an end.

But as soon as ballot boxes were opened on Sunday morning, it became apparent that wasn’t the case. In fact, the first preference vote share for Labour in Michael D Higgins’ former constituency had decreased to just 3% – a further decline from the 5% Derek Nolan managed in 2016.

Labour’s hammering wasn’t contained to Galway and it’s clear they haven’t been forgiven for their time in Government with Fine Gael. Nonetheless, Cllr McNelis said he was “devastated” by the result when he visited the count centre on Monday morning.

He’d been eliminated on the fourth count the day before, having received 1,548 first preferences.

“I was at home yesterday – I was devastated, gutted, but I know it’s not personal. The party is in trouble and we’re going to have to look at that. The unions have left us and they’re voting for Fianna Fáil, Sinn Féin and Fine Gael. That was our core vote; we were a workers’ party once upon a time.

“We were the party that fought for marriage equality long before anybody else – the SocDems have taken that mantel off us; the repeal of the 8th Amendment, we were the ones who fought for that,” said Cllr McNelis.

“The Left vote is very, very crowded here in Galway so [Labour is] going to have to regroup and reorganise. I have to explain what Níall does a bit more. The result that we got, people have been ringing me and saying, ‘Níall, we’re sorry, it was Labour and not Níall’.”

For more, read this week’s Galway City Tribune.

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Election 2020

Down but not out – Crowe considering Seanad bid

Dara Bradley

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Seanad bid: Galway West Fianna Fáil candidate Ollie Crowe during the count.

When one door closes, another opens. That appeared to be the motto of Ollie Crowe, who bowed out of the race in Galway West on the seventh count.

No sooner had the electorate shut the door on his hopes of taking a second seat for Fianna Fáil, the city councillor was contemplating a bid for a seat in the Upper House of the Oireachtas.

“We just came up short; the national trend affected it in the last couple of days. I was delighted to get 5,200 first preferences in my first time standing for Dáil Éireann. I’m disappointed but I feel overall, I revitalised Fianna Fáil in the city and rebuilt the party.

“I’m honoured and humbled that public representatives have asked me to stand for the Seanad and that’s something we’ll discuss over the coming days and weeks and make a decision on that,” he said.

Cllr Crowe told Galway City Tribune that Fianna Fáil made a mistake supporting Fine Gael in ‘Confidence and Supply’ for four years. “We probably stayed in too long – four years is too long. People wanted change, people spoke for change and we were too aligned with the Government.”

He said that a coalition with Sinn Féin “wouldn’t be my preference”.

For more, read this week’s Galway City Tribune.

Get the Connacht Tribune Live app
The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

 

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Election 2020

Party unstuck by a green wave of a different hue

Dara Bradley

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Galway West Green Party candidate Pauline O’Reilly with her daughter Cara (9) after she was eliminated.

Pauline O’Reilly’s biggest supporter, her daughter Caragh, cuddled into the Green Party councillor’s side as she gave an interview to the Galway City Tribune at the count centre on Sunday, after being eliminated on the sixth count in Galway West.

The nine-year-old was by her mother’s side last May as well, when Cllr O’Reilly – and two other Galway councillors, Martina O’Connor and Alastair McKinstry – was elected in the local elections on the back of a ‘Green wave’.

Less than a year later, and ger Dáil bid came unstuck by another green wave – green of a Republican tinge.

She was tipped by many political pundits and rival candidates, as the likely beneficiary if Galway West returned two ‘left’ seats. And a TG4 constituency poll the week before voters cast their ballots, confirmed Cllr O’Reilly was bang in contention. But then came the surge for Sinn Féin, which her supporters felt on the doorsteps.

“We knew a week out that I was in trouble; I felt in the last couple of days support had shifted back a bit. I wasn’t shocked when I saw the tallies because I was feeling the worry a week ago and I knew it hadn’t come back sufficiently. Certainly, a lot of younger people, children and teens, were upset at the lack of conversation about climate and the environment but it just wasn’t coming up strongly enough with adults,” she said.

Cllr O’Reilly took 6% of the vote with 3,650 first preferences, an increase of 3.5% compared with Seamus Sheridan in 2016, but she was swamped by Sinn Féin’s rise.

For more, read this week’s Galway City Tribune.

Get the Connacht Tribune Live app
The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

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