Kildare North: What To Look For On The First Count

Based on the Irish Times exit poll, it would probably be Murphy, Durkan, Lawless and Cronin. Based on the RTE exit poll, which includes second preferences, Fine Gael might actually get two in, at the expense of Sinn Fein, if Durkan’s first preferences are high enough.

Just a few things to look out for on the first count:

-The size of Catherine Murphy’s surplus if she’s elected on the first count, likely to go to other left/reform/anti-government candidates.

-Basically the same for Durkan, with his surplus, if available, going to Lawlor and Stagg.

-If Stagg’s first preference vote is under 7’000, he’s in trouble. Over that, and I think he’ll hold on. A stronger showing than that and he could help Lawlor.

-Similarly, Lawlor will need to be getting somewhere around 6’000 or so in first preferences to be in with a shot of holding his seat. That would be a solid foundation to build on with transfers from Durkan, Stagg and whoever else.

-The Fianna Fail candidates could get away with a fairly even split of the likely 8’000 -10’000 first preferences I think they’re likely to get, and still elect one of them, but the transfers have to be there. Any breakdown in transfer management will seriously trip them up.

-Reada Cronin will be right in the running if she is within a thousand or two votes of Stagg on the first count. She can expect more transfers than Sinn Fein have gotten in previous votes, from Murphy and the hard-left candidates.

-Aside from it being an interesting indication of the hard-left’s traction in a usually uninterested constituency, the numbers for Brendan Young, Ashling Merriman and to a much lesser extent the other Independents may prove crucial in determining who gets seats when it comes to transfers. They have to be heading Cronin’s way.

-Shane FitzGerald will need to get an excess of 2215 votes – his 2007 total, the highest he’s ever gotten – to make the switch from the Greens to Renua worth it.

-Maebh Ní Fhallúin will be looking to hit that near enough that same number to get the Greens back to where they were in 2007.

In 2011 the first count came out just ahead of 1600, so will have to wait a bit. Tally’s to think about before then.

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