Tuesday 25 July 2017

Fine Gael leadership race: Leo Varadkar wins vote among councillors as counting continues

  • Leo Varadkar wins 55pc of councillors' votes
  • Simon Coveney wins 65pc of vote among party members
  • Leo Varadkar still expected to be elected new party leader
  • Counting underway in Mansion House since 2pm
Simon Coveney arrives at the Mansion House with his wife Ruth as counting continued (Mark Condren)
Simon Coveney arrives at the Mansion House with his wife Ruth as counting continued (Mark Condren)
Counting underway at the National count centre for the Fine Gael leadeship election Pic:Mark Condren
Counting underway at the National count centre for the Fine Gael leadeship election Pic:Mark Condren
Ministers Simon Harris and Frances Fitzgerald at the National count centre for the Fine Gael leadeship election Pic:Mark Condren
Kevin Doyle

Kevin Doyle

Leo Varadkar has won the second electoral college in the Fine Gael leadership election, with 55pc of the vote.

Out of a total valid poll of 223 Simon Coveney won 100 votes (45pc), while Leo Varadkar secured 123.

The vote of the councillors is worth 10pc of the overall vote.

Counting is now underway of the votes of the parliamentary party - the most influential tranche of votes.

Membership vote

Earlier, Simon Coveney  won 65pc of the membership of the Fine Gael party.

Leo Varadkar (left) and Simon Coveney. Photo: Arthur Carron.
Leo Varadkar (left) and Simon Coveney. Photo: Arthur Carron.

While Mr Varadkar’s team still expect to win the overall contest they had hoped to perform a clean-sweep of the membership, councillor and parliamentary party.

In total 10,842 of the party’s 21,000 member voted, with 7,051 siding with the Cork candidate. Some 3,772 voted for Mr Varadkar. There were 19 spoiled votes.

Ministers Simon Harris and Frances Fitzgerald at the National count centre for the Fine Gael leadeship election
Pic:Mark Condren
Ministers Simon Harris and Frances Fitzgerald at the National count centre for the Fine Gael leadeship election Pic:Mark Condren

The membership make up 25pc of the overall poll, meaning that Mr Coveney currently commands a lead of 16.3pc against Mr Varadkar’s 8.3pc.

However it is widely anticipated that the Dublin TD will still become the next leader of the party. The vast majority of the parliamentary party, who make up 65pc of the electorate, have publicly supported Mr Varadkar.

Counting is continuing in Dublin’s Mansion House.

Mr Coveney arrived at the venue shortly before the membership vote was announced but Mr Varadkar is not expected to arrive until shortly before the final result.

Eamonn Farrell, brother of Colin Farrell, poses with Minister Heather Humphreys at the Mansion House as counting continues in the Fine Gael leadership vote
Eamonn Farrell, brother of Colin Farrell, poses with Minister Heather Humphreys at the Mansion House as counting continues in the Fine Gael leadership vote

The count in the Mansion House in Dublin city centre has been underway since shortly after 2pm.

More than 10,000 of the party's 21,000 members cast their votes since last Monday.

Around 200 of the party’s 232 councillors have voted and earlier today there was a 100pc turnout among the parliamentary party.

Councillors are worth 10pc overall, while the PP makes up 65pc.

Simon Coveney pictured at the Mansion House today
Simon Coveney pictured at the Mansion House today

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