THE bottom three candidates in Laois Offaly failed to reach 500 votes between them.
The lowest scorer was Michael Cox, whom bookies tipped to get the least amount of first prefernce votes in the country, got 60 votes. However the lowest number of first preference votes went to Peadar O Ceallaigh in Dublin South East with 18 votes.
It was the first time running in a General Election for the orthodox Catholic Bishop Cox, whose church is located in Cree. His election mandate included prioritising health, housing and education. He made headlines in 1999 when he ordained singer Sinead O’Connor as a priest called “Mother Bernadette Mary.”
John Boland from Tubber was the second lowest poller with 119 first preference votes. The first time General Election candidate also ran in the Longford Westmeath constituency where he faired a bit better with 330 first preference votes. Mr Boland said his location between Horseleap and Moate made him an ideal candidate to run in both constituencies. Community nursing homes, more sporting events for over 40’s, freedom to cut turf on bogs and a greater emphasis on community activites formed his election mandate.
The third lowest poller in Laois Offaly was Green Party candidate Christopher Fettes. Mr Fettes received 306 first prefernce votes. Mr Fettes stood in the 2002 General Election for Laois Offaly where he polled 520 first prefernce votes. He also ran in the 1984 European Election. Mr Fettes said he never believed he would get a seat but he wanted to give the people of Laois Offaly the opportunity to vote for the Green Party. A founder member of the Green Party Mr Fettes initiated the 1981 meeting in Dublin that would lead to the formation of the party. The 2011 General Election proved disasterous for the Green Party with them failing to secure any seats.