The old war horse defeats this Government in a referendum for a second time in 18 months. Took Mary Lou McDonald out in a key debate and was the de facto head of the No campaign.
McDowell, having previously argued for its abolition, then became its strongest advocate saying it was the strongest bulwark against an overly centralised executive. Denounced the abolition proposal as a "power grab".
The Fianna Fail leader's decision to oppose the abolition may have been driven by a sense of opportunism, but his gamble has paid off. Performed well in the key debates.
Prof John Crown
The UCD and St Vincent's Hospital oncologist was a vociferous campaigner for the retention and reform of the Upper House.
Prof Crown used traditional media and social media platforms as well as a last-minute text campaign to argue the case against doing away with the Seanad.
He also performed well in a key interview against Transport Minister Leo Varadkar on RTE Radio.
Fine Gael rebel Lucinda Creighton weighed in on the No side towards the end of the campaign, linking up with McDowell. Given their expulsion from FG in the wake of the passage of the abortion legislation during the summer, the decision of the Reform Alliance to support the retention certainly solidified the wedge between them and their former party.
Rebels like Fidelma Healy Eames also criticised the Fine Gael claim that abolishing the Seanad would save €20m a year.
BIGGEST LOSERS IN SEANAD REFERENDUM
"The biggest loser in all of this is the Taoiseach. It was the Taoiseach's referendum," FF's Billy Kelleher said yesterday.
This was Mr Kenny's own personal crusade and he continued with it despite having little or no support for the proposal within his own party and Government.
Yet, the recriminations against him from within FG started on Friday amid widespread confusion at polling stations and over the tone and tenor of the party's campaign.
Some of his senators were also "personally hurt" by the "campaign of lies" being orchestrated from HQ.
However, despite denials from some of his chief lieutenants, Mr Kenny's decision not to debate his own idea on television in a national debate did become a stick with which to beat him.
Ultimately, he has suffered a major blow to his stature and his credibility, and he knows it was all of his own making.
Dropped his notes in the RTE debate, dropped the ball massively on the Seanad referendum. Handed the poisoned chalice by Mr Kenny to be the director of elections for this campaign, but this defeat must mean he is now politically dead.
Mr Bruton, who had been anonymous since his failed heave against Mr Kenny in 2010, was given the task of spearheading a campaign that never ignited and which was constantly dogged by accusations of lying to the people.
As director, it was his responsibility to clear the posters which claimed €20m would be saved a year by abolishing the Upper House, which turned out to be untrue.
He also allowed a series of derogatory statements to be made about senators, which deeply angered many FG members of the Seanad.
Having previously been the party of constant opposition, Sinn Fein surprised many by deciding to support the Seanad's abolition. Indeed, the party itself was split and yesterday's result will heap pressure on leader Gerry Adams, but also his ubiquitous deputy Mary Lou McDonald.
Mary Lou was severely beaten by Michael McDowell in a high-profile TV3 debate, and she never looked comfortable siding with the establishment devils of FG.
She has been bruised by this campaign but her bid to become SF leader in 2016 has not been fatally damaged.
Given he is the leader of the junior coalition party in a Government that has lost another referendum, Eamon Gilmore has to be included in the list of losers.
However, the damage to Mr Gilmore is somewhat less to that inflicted upon Mr Kenny, as Labour was also lukewarm on the idea, and its members were less than vigorous in their efforts during the campaign. Certainly, the gleeful tweets and statements from some Labour TDs and senators showed the party's commitment to the Upper House's abolition.
But, there may be a sting in the tail for Mr Gilmore. Given there is a large number of further referendums to come including one on the introduction of gay marriage, Labour may receive the same treatment that FG got when the time comes.