Sinn Féin faces being completely wiped out in Offaly local elections

Justin Kelly

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Justin Kelly

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news@offalyexpress.ie

Sinn Féin faces being completely wiped out in Offaly local elections

Sinn Féin faces being completely wiped out in Offaly local elections

With tallies completed across the three electoral areas in Offaly, it appears as though Sinn Féin could lose all of its three seats in the constituency. 

The party won one seat in each of the electoral areas in 2014, including two poll-toppers in Brendan Killeavy in Tullamore and Martin O'Reilly in Edenderry. Killeavy was the star of the 2014 election, claiming just shy of 23% of the first preference votes in Tullamore in 2014.

Martin O'Reilly claimed 19% and was elected on the first count in Edenderry whilst Carol Nolan, a future TD, was elected in Birr in 2014 with just over 10% of first preference votes. 

In 2019, Sinn Féin's vote in Tullamore has collapsed with Brendan Killeavy's replacement on the ballot, Anne Marie Ennis claiming less than 300 first preference votes according to completed tallies. She tallied 12th of the 12 candidates in Tullamore and faces immediate elimination. 

In Edenderry, Alan Davy, the man who was co-opted onto Offaly County Council following the resignation of O'Reilly, has polled moderately, claiming just 579 first preference votes according to tallies. He faces a battle for one of the final two seats in Edenderry but won't transfer as well as Robert McDermott, Fergus McDonnell or potentially Pippa Hackett. 

Similarly, in Birr, Sean Maher, who was co-opted onto the council in place of Carol Nolan following her Dáil election in 2016, has received a small percentage of the votes, according to tallies. 

He picked up just 521 first preference votes and will need to transfer massively to make enough gains to overtake the likes of Bernie Fanneran, Hughie Egan and Clare Claffey to retain his seat, which will be the final available seat in Birr after the expected elections of John Clendennen, Peter Ormond, John Leahy, Eamon Dooley and John Carroll.

Barring a surprise spread of transfers in Edenderry for Alan Davy, Sinn Féin is on course to go from three seats to zero across Offaly's 19 council seats. It continues a trend of lost votes for the part across many counties. 

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