Dublin Bay North: Marathon count ends with loss for Labour
Published 02/03/2016 | 02:30
It had been a marathon, four-day emotional rollercoaster for the last candidates standing in Dublin Bay North.
While there was bitter disappointment for Labour's outgoing Equality Minister Aodhán Ó Riordáin, who was eliminated on the 15th count after reaching a total of 10,329 votes, for the eventual victors there was jubilation, relief and a focus on the job ahead.
New Sinn Féin TD Denise Mitchell, who was joined in the RDS by her party colleagues Gerry Adams and Mary Lou McDonald, was elected with 11,348 votes.
"It's down to the work of a fantastic team we have and I just want to thank my family as well because they're the ones who had to put up with me for the past few weeks," she said.
"I think it's clear from this election that the Fine Gael and Labour government have left the stage, so it's important that they take their water charges and their property tax along with them."
Finian McGrath, of the Independent Alliance, said he was honoured to be returned to the Dáil with 11,191 votes - and acknowledged the pain of the unsuccessful candidates.
"It was a very difficult few days for all of us," he said. "Regardless of the politics, you had Aodhán, you had Averil, you had Denise Mitchell and John Lyons and myself all fighting for seats.
"So on a personal level . . . you do feel for people and when you lose, it's horrific."
Independent Tommy Broughan was also thrilled to be returned after early tallies suggested his seat was in jeopardy. However, he claimed a seat with 11,565 votes. He said he would be talking to the rest of the Independent Alliance in the next 24 hours to discuss a direction for the group.