Wednesday 17 January 2018

Election 2016: New faces - Meet your first-time TDs

Sinn Féin president Gerry Adams and councillor Imelda Munster are lifted by supporters after being elected. Photo: Reuters
Sinn Féin president Gerry Adams and councillor Imelda Munster are lifted by supporters after being elected. Photo: Reuters
Donnchadh O'Laoghaire at a count centre in Cork Credit: Tony Gavin
Fianna Fail's Jackie Cahill celebrates with his supporters Credit : Frank Mc Grath
Fine Gael candidate Maria Bailey
Eamon Scanlon and Senator Marc MacSharry
Mary Butler, Fianna Fáil
Pat Casey
Sinn Féin's Louise OReilly pictured with Mary Lou McDonald at the count centre in Cloghran, Dublin Credit: Stephen Collins
Shane Cassells
Cllr Aindrias Moynihan.
Sinn Féin's Martin Kenny
Margaret Murphy-O’Mahony (Fianna Fáil) Cork South-West
Jack Chambers
Election 2016 candidate Kathleen Funchion (Sinn Fein) gets to grips with Caesar The Snake during KCLR's I'm A Politician Get Me Out Of Here. Photo: Ken McGuire/KCLR
Sinn Féin's Eoin Ó Broin. Photo: Niall Carson/PA Wire
Maurice Quinlivan. Photo: Mark Condren
Sinn Féin Councillor John Brady
Fianna Fáil's Fiona O'Loughlin
Fianna Fail's John Lahart
Fianna Fáil's Eugene Murphy
Fine Gael's Kate O'Connell shakes hands with Fianna Fail's Jim O'Callaghan after they both won a seat in the Dublin Bay South Credit: Damien Eagers
Newly-elected Frank O’Rourke
Newly-elected James Lawless
Geraldine Gittens

Geraldine Gittens

This election has been a game changer in terms of old faces leaving the Dail, and new faces coming in.

Fine Gael:

Tom Neville (Limerick County)

Fine Gael's Tom Neville

The success of first time candidate Tom Neville - son of retired Fine Gael Deputy Dan Neville - has seen the status quo maintained in the three seat constituency.  Fine Gael's success has also bucked the national swing against the party.

Speaking after his election Tom, a 40-year-old West Limerick councillor, said he has had "politics in his Cornflakes since he was ten years old."

His father Dan Neville who recently announced his decision to retire from politics was among those celebrating his sons success at the count centre in UL arena.

"It is a nice moment from the family as well given I am continuing on where he has left off," said the newly elected TD.

"I am absolutely humbled by the support I have been given. I can see from the national fingers that the Fine Gael trend has been bucked here in County Limerick and the local supporters worked extremely hard."

Noel Rock (Dublin North-West)

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Fine Gael's Noel Rock celebrates with supporters after winning a seat in the Dublin North west constituency at the RDS count centre. Photo: Damien Eagers

Newly elected Fine Gael TD Noel Rock was just four years old when his party last won a seat in the Dublin North-West constituency.

"It's the first Fine Gael seat in 24 years," he said, following his election on the ninth count in the RDS yesterday.

Both he and Fianna Fail's Paul McAuliffe - the current leader of Fianna Fail on Dublin City Council - had been vying for the last seat in the constituency, after Social Democrat Rosin Shortall and Sinn Fein's Dessie Ellis took the first two seats during the count on Saturday.

Rock was elected on the ninth count today at the RDS.

"I think we ran a remarkable locally focused campaign," he told

"I am only 28. I will be the youngest Fine Gael TD going into this parliament. I think we had a young devoted team around me, we are full of energy and enthusiasm, that played a vital role for me," he said.

Maria Bailey (Dun Laoghaire)

Maria Bailey. Photo: Gerry Mooney.

A past pupil of political rival Fianna Fáil's Mary Hanafin, Ms Bailey was selected by Fine Gael to run with Mary Mitchell O’Connor.

Maria has represented the Killiney/Ballybrack ward on Dun Laoghaire Rathdown council. Her father Cllr John Bailey was elected to the Council for the first time also in 2004

Joespha Madigan (Dublin Rathdown)

Fine Gael's Joespha Madigan

Ms Madigan took the second seat in her constitency, beating her Fine Gael running mate Alan Shatter.

Colm Brophy (Dublin South West)

Fine Gael's Colm Brophy

Fine Gael’s Colm Brophy was elected without reaching the quota with 10639 votes.

He said that he was honoured to have a chance to represent the constituency in the Dail.

Kate O'Connell

Fine Gael's, Kate O'Connell with her husband Morgan and sister, Theresa Newman celebrates after winning a seat in the Dublin Bay South constituency at the RDS count centre. Picture credit; Damien Eagers 26/2/2016

Kate O'Connell was in a race with Fianna Fail's Jim O'Callaghan and Labour's Kevin Humphreys for the last two seats of the Dublin Bay South constituency, and she was elected when Mr Humphreys became the latest casualty in the near wipe out for his party.

Fine Gael had been pumping resources into Ms O'Connell's campaign in an effort to unseat Ms Creighton, who quit the party after voting against the Protection of Life During Pregnancy Bill in 2013.

Last month, O'Connell had a word of advice for her Renua adversary. She said: "We are the same age. I was born on 3rd January and she was born on the 20th January of 1980 and yet I don't see how she represents me and my age group. In fact, I resent the fact that she thinks she represents my generation of women. I don't want to be governed by laws created by a bunch of dead men.

"She is incredibly sanctimonious and she needs to get off her high horse. Who is she to judge me and my generation? Or any woman for that matter?"

A mother of three young children - all under five, including a 14-week-old baby - the pharmacist regularly sees women in a state of distress, seeking information on how to travel to the UK for an abortion.

"I saw one young woman recently who told me she had to scrape the money together from her boyfriend's mother, her own mother and a friend. The indignity of that it horrendous."

Fianna Fáil:

Lisa Chambers (Mayo)

Lisa Chambers

Fianna Fáil's Lisa Chambers took the final seat in Mayo this afternoon.

"I believe this job is important, I believe it is worth fighting for and I will do my very best for the people of Mayo," she said.

Last night, she said she hoped to be involved in discussions to form the next Government.

Asked about a possible coalition with Fine Gael, the Mayo candidate said: "I think nationally the people have given us a mandate and I think we shouldn't pre-empt the outcome.

"We're going to have to wait and see what that outcome is and tomorrow or next week sit down with the party and discuss that. It doesn't look as if the Government are having a good campaign, they have struggled in many constituencies and I think their messaging was wrong, particulary outside of Dublin.

"This idea of keep the recovery going, they have posters all across Mayo and I can tell you in eight months of canvassing the feeling on the ground was that recovery has not come west," she added.

The Fianna Fáil candidate said she hoped she would be part of the decision-making process when it comes to forming a Government.

Mary Butler (Waterford)

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Mary Butler, Fianna Fáil

Mr Butler was picking up number ones in both urban and rural constituencies in Waterford.

She soared past the quota on the first count and told “I was confident when I saw the Exit Polls last night but to get over ten thousands votes (10,603) is incredible. This is a great day for Fianna Fail and I’m very proud that the people of Waterford have put their faith in me.”

Anne Rabbitte (Galway East)

Fianna Fáil's Anne Rabitte

Ms Rabitte, a mother of three and a widow, was deemed elected on the sixth count when the remaining five candidates divided up the transfers of Fianna Fáil's Colm Keaveney, who was eliminated after the fifth count.

The financial advisor says she will focus on five main areas to affect change: rural Ireland (community development), tourism (economic growth), health and fitness, early intervention in childcare, care of the elderly (Fair Deal/Nursing Home Support Scheme).

James Browne (Wexford)

Fianna Fáil's James Browne

Fianna Fail’s James Browne, son son of retiring TD John, was elected on the tenth count after Independent Ger Carthy had been eliminated.

Although a full recount will take place in Wexford this morning, the first-time TD said yesterday: ‘I’m delighted and exhausted. It’s all a bit surreal and very humbling. We’ve been out full-time since the middle of October and its been a long, long road.

‘Dad is very proud as is all my family. It’s a big moment for him too to be retiring after being undefeated in eight general elections.

‘I feel very humbled and honoured for people to have put this kind of trust in me and the work now begins on Monday morning. I was quite confident from the reaction I was getting on the door, but in politics you can never be sure.’

Shane Cassells (Meath West)

Shane Cassells

Mr Cassells was elected at the first count with 10,585 first preference votes.

Newly elected Fianna Fáil TD, Shane Cassells said it doesn't matter that all three Meath West TD's are set be from Navan.

"I don't think it's relevant where I lay my head at night, my duty of care is to every single person that has a home here and those that don't have a home as well. I'm just as grateful for the huge vote that I got in the Trim and the south Meath area as I am for the Navan and north Meath area."

Aindrias Moynihan (Cork North West)

Cllr Aindrias Moynihan.

The father-of-four and engineer, is son of Donal Moynihan, former TD for Cork North West, and the grandson of Jamie Moynihan.

He was chairman of Blarney-Macroom Municipal Council in 2015.

Fiona O’Loughlin (Kildare South)

Fianna Fáil's Fiona O'Loughlin

The boundless energy and enthusiasm of Dail newcomer Fiona O'Loughlin's campaign played a major part in the success for Fianna Fáil in Kildare South.

She surpassed her more experienced running mate, outgoing deputy Sean O'Fearghail, to finish second and became the first female Fianna Fail TD in this constituency.

O'Loughlin was added to the Fianna Fáil ticket after the selection convention had nominated only one.

Margaret Murphy-O’Mahony (Cork South-West)

Margaret Murphy-O’Mahony (Fianna Fáil) Cork South-West

Ms Murphy O’Mahony topped the poll and makes history as the first female TD for the Cork South West constituency.

Speaking after her election she said that she was humbled by her support and said she would work hard for the people of West Cork.

‘I am delighted and I want to thank all those who canvassed on my behalf and also I want to thank the people of West Cork for their support. Tomorrow I’ll take stock but for now we’ll celebrate,’ Murphy-O’Mahony said.

Jack Chambers (Dublin West)

Jack Chambers

Mr Chambers took the third seat in Dublin West, regaining the seat held by the late Finance Minister Brian Lenihan.

Mr Chambers said:"I think Fianna Fáil are back and the Irish people had their say on this government."

Asked about a possible coalition with Fine Gael he said: "It's early days... I think obviously people want stability."

John Lahart (Dublin South West)

Fianna Fail's John Lahart

Fianna Fail’s John Lahart topped the poll in Dublin South West with 11,402 votes, in a remarkable recovery for the party in the constituency. 

Mr Lahart is the former parliamentary assistant of former Fianna Fail minister Tom Kitt.

Kevin O’Keeffe (Cork East)

Kevin O'Keeffe

When returning officer Noreen O’Neill read out the results of the first count at 7.55pm on Saturday night it became clear that Fianna Fail’s Cllr Kevin O’Keeffe, who narrowly missed out on a Dail seat, in 2011 would finally achieve his holy grail.

Last night, neither Deputy O’Keeffe or his supporters could hide their joy as they revelled in the long-awaited moment.

“Honoured and delighted to be a TD for Cork East. I was disappointed in 2011 when we lost the two seats and even more for myself having come so close. We have worked hard to get here today and almost got two seats back. This is a proud day for the party and the O’Keeffe family.”

Eugene Murphy (Roscommon-Galway)

Fianna Fáil's Eugene Murphy

Only one vote separated Mr Murphy from his rival Fine Gael's Maura Hopkins after the first count with Hopkins taking 6,812 first preference votes to Murphy's 6,813.

Mr Murphy managed to pick up an impressive 2,539 transfers leaving him 791 votes clear of his Fine Gael rival pulling off a phenomenal victory for the Fianna Fail party in Roscommon/ Galway.

Mr Murphy was first elected to Roscommon Co Council in 1985 when he became the youngest member ever elected to that body.

Jim O’Callaghan (Dublin Bay South)

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Fine Gael's Kate O'Connell shakes hands with Fianna Fail's Jim O'Callaghan after they both won a seat in the Dublin Bay South Credit: Damien Eagers

There was joy for Fianna Fail in Dublin Nay South as the party managed to get first time candidate Jim O'Callaghan a seat.

The barrister had been a councillor since 2009, and has worked as a legal adviser to the Fianna Fáil party and has been a councillor since 2009.

Jackie Cahill (Tipperary)

Fianna Fail's Jackie Cahill celebrates with his supporters Credit : Frank Mc Grath

Fianna Fáil councillor Jackie Cahill is the party's first TD in elected Tipperary since 2011.

Mr Cahill, a former President of the Irish Creamery Milk Suppliers Association (ICMSA), said local issues affecting the farming community, as well as a chronic shortage of suitable housing in the county, helped to secure his win.

The 53-year-old Thurles native said people in Tipperary were seriously "let down" by the outgoing coalition and the "less well off" weren't looked after.

"The lack of social housing is a huge issue.

"The grey vote was extremely angry with the government. I knew in the past few days that the government were in deep trouble in this county."

Marc MacSharry (Sligo-Leitrim)

Eamon Scanlon and Senator Marc MacSharry

A Fianna Fáil Senator since 2009, Marc MacSharry was the first TD elected in the re-drawn constituency

He is the son of Ray MacSharry, the former Fianna Fáil Minister and European Commissioner.

Pat Casey (Wicklow)

Pat Casey.jpg
Pat Casey

Pat Casey of Fianna Fáil, a Glendalough-based hotelier, said he was delighted to win back a seat in the constituency for the party.

A former independent councillor, he joined the party to Fianna Fail to contest the election.

Declan Breathnach (Louth)

Declan Breathnach.jpg

Elected first as a county councillor in 1991, Mr Breathnach ran once unsuccessfully for national office in 2011.

He was elected for Louth on the same count as Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams.

Frank O'Rourke (Kildare North)

Newly-elected Frank O’Rourke

Fianna Fail's newcomer in the four seat constituency. He worked as the party's election guru in for the area in 2007.

James Lawless (Kildare North)

Newly-elected James Lawless

Running mate to Frank O’Rourke, James Lawless took a second seat for the party in the Kildare North constituency.

Many had deemed it a risky strategy to run two candidates in the area but Fianna Fail managed to secure 28 per cent of first preferences.

Sinn Féin:

Kathleen Funchion (Carlow Kilkenny)

11 NEWS iampot kclr kenmcguire11.jpg
Election 2016 candidate Kathleen Funchion (Sinn Fein) gets to grips with Caesar The Snake during KCLR's I'm A Politician Get Me Out Of Here. Photo: Ken McGuire/KCLR

The first time TD was the only woman elected in the five-seat constituency of Carlow/Kilkenny as she took a seat for Sinn Fein.

Ms Funchion danced her way to the Dail as she kept the "nerves" at bay by splitting her time at the count centre with the charity Strictly Lets Dance in the nearby Lyrath Hotel.

Ms Funchion, who is separated from Senator David Cullinane in Waterford who was also elected to the Dail, said there had been a strong swing towards Sinn Féin throughout the country.

She said housing and rural unemployment would be key issues for her. "Towns and villages that have just been decimated. That's a thing we need to focus on and create jobs for people for people to stay in this country," she said.

Carol Nolan (Offaly)

Sinn Féin's Carol Nolan

Ms Nolan won a seat in the Dail on her first attempt in Offaly.

The new TD iis a married mother of two and former Gaelscoil principal in Laois.

The 36-year-old was elected to Offaly County Council for the first time in 2014 and out-polled the more fancied Renua candidate, Leahy, by more than 200 votes in her first general election.

She was nearly 400 votes behind Joe Hannigan, an Independent candidate from the part of north Tipperary which was added to Offaly for this election, but overtook him on the fourth count following the elimination of another Independent, Edenderry man John Foley.

In the finish she had 270 votes to spare over Fitzpatrick and was elected without reaching the quota.

Eoin Ó Broin (Dublin Mid West)

Sinn Féin's Eoin Ó Broin. Photo: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Mr O’Broin was the poll topper in Dublin Mid West, being elected on the first count, with 9,782 votes, followed by Frances Fitzgerald on 9,028.

Hailing fom Cabinteely in Dún Laoghaire, Mr O’Broin was educated in Blackrock College in Dublin. He holds a degree in Cultural Studies from the University of East London and an MA in Irish Politics from Queens University Belfast.

Ó Broin, who is the partner of Dublin MEP Lynn Boylan, lost out on a seat in 2011 having polled over 5,000 first preference votes.

A former member of Belfast council, the highly able politician is often trotted out to defend the party when it is embroiled in controversy.

Martin Kenny (Sligo-Leitrim)

Sinn Féin's Martin Kenny

Newly elected Martin Kenny has been a local councillor for Leitrim since 2004. He was the second TD to be elected in the constituency.

Maurice Quinlivan (Limerick City)

Maurice Quinlivan. Photo: Mark Condren

Mr Quinlivan took the second seat in the four-seat constituency yesterday.

He previously ran unsuccessfully as a candidate at the 2004 local elections for Limerick City Council and for Limerick East in the 2007 general election. He was elected to Limerick City Council in 2009.

Imelda Munster (Louth)

Sinn Féin president Gerry Adams and councillor Imelda Munster are lifted by supporters after being elected. Photo: Reuters

The first woman TD for Louth, Sinn Fein’s Imelda Munster said the message from the electorate was “that they don’t want any more austerity, that they want a fair recovery, they are very definitive in it.”

She has been a local councillor since 2004.

David Cullinane (Waterford)

Sinn Féin's David Cullinane

In three consecutive General elections Mr Cullinane fell short but yesterday he secured 9,739 number ones and was elected on the sixth count.

Even Martin McGuinness popped in to congratulate him while on a national whistle-stop tour.

John Brady (Wicklow)

Sinn Féin Councillor John Brady

Mr Brady came in second place with 16.3pc, after Social Democrats's Stephen Donnelly topped poll with 21.1pc.

Martin McGuinness visited the Wicklow count centre today to congratulate John Brady who was on course to win a seat for Sinn Fein.

He said: "It doesn't come as any great surprise for me to come to County Wicklow and see John Brady elected.  It comes as a great joy for me to come to Wicklow and see John Brady elected. I canvassed for him the last time when he missed out by a hundred odd votes. And I canvassed for him this time. He represents the future of Sinn Fein."

"The amount of new absolutely phenomenal."

Pat Buckley (Cork East)

Sinn Fein's Pat Buckley

Deputy Buckley took the fourth seat in his constituency and said he was “humbled” to take the seat and “delighted” on behalf of our team.

“I am just the captain of this team, which has worked unbelievably hard. They have been amazing. We know the work we put in. This is an amazing mandate to get from the people of the constituency and I look forward to doing so much more on their behalf,” he said.

Louise O'Reilly (Dublin Fingal)

Sinn Féin's Louise O'Reilly

Ms O'Reilly said her victory has shown her party is "transfer-friendly".

Ms O'Reilly gathered a total of 8,771 votes in the constituency, under the quota but it was enough to be deemed elected.

"This is a fantastic day for my family and for myself," she said. "I'm very honoured to be given this job and I'm very honoured and I'll work really really hard."

"We've been doing this since last March. We've been meeting loads of people and we knew the vote was there," she added. "We knew the support was there.

"It's not a protest vote, it's not a negative vote. It's a very, very positive thing. Today you can see our party transfer-friendly."

Donnchadh O Laoghaire (Cork South Central)

Donnchadh O'Laoghaire at a count centre in Cork Credit: Tony Gavin

Aged just 26 when elected as a local councilor, the graduate of law and former political advisor to various Sinn Féin senators took the third seat in Cork South Central, forcing Agriculture Minister Simon Coveney into fourth place.

Louise O’Reilly (Dublin Fingal)

Louise O Reilly90.jpg
Sinn Féin's Louise OReilly pictured with Mary Lou McDonald at the count centre in Cloghran, Dublin Credit: Stephen Collins

Newly-elected Louise O'Reilly unseated Fine Gael deputy leader and outgoing Children's Minister James O'Reilly in a dramatic victory in Dublin Fingal.

Polling at 5,228 first-preference votes, she is the first Sinn Féin candidate ever to a take a seat in the constituency.

Green Party

Catherine Martin (Dublin Rathdown)

The Green Party's Catherine Martin

Catherine Martin took the last seat in her constituency, after edging out former Justice Minister Alan Shatter.

Speaking after her win Catherine made a pledge to her voters.

“I wouldn’t be here unless you had faith in me and I won’t let you down. This is a clear signal to me that you can get elected on goodwill and volunteerism. Money doesn’t do it," she said.


Dr Michael Harty (No Doctor No GP' candidate for Clare)

Dr Michael Harty

The No Doctor No Village candidate was elected in Clare on 8th count.

He got a rapturous welcome on arriving into the count centre in Clare last night.

The west Clare GP said: “We struck a chord with people which started with our ‘No Doctor, No Village’ slogan, but we realised at our first meeting in Corofin that it was a much wider issue.”

He said: “There was an anger and frustration there so it was ‘No chemist No Viillage’ ‘No Garda station No Village’ ‘No farmers No Village’ and farmers are a fundamental part of all Irish towns and villages.”

He said: “I would have never have seen myself a political sensation - I know Clare has been a county for throwing up successful candidates over the years - Dr Moosajee Bhamjee, Dr Paddy Hillery and Daniel O’Connell if you want to really get excited about it

Dr Harty added: “I want to commend the people of Clare - they are lateral thinkers and they are quite willing to take a chance and I hope I can fulfil their belief in me.

He said that “the last five weeks have been like five All Ireland weekends in a row, there has been spectacular excitement”.

Michael Collins (Cork South West)

Independent Michael Collins

West Cork’s first independent TD for 59 years, Cllr Michael Collins finished up with 11,063 votes.

Collins told his supporters that he would do for West Cork what Michael Healy-Rae has done for Kerry.

‘West Cork needs an independent voice and I will be the Healy-Rae of West Cork. I want to thank all my supporters and all those who have helped with this great success,’ Michael Collins said.

Sean Canney (Galway East)

Minister of State for Office of Public Works and Flood Relief: Sean Canney

Returning Officer Derry Buckley deemed Canney elected when the remaining five candidates divided up the transfers of Fianna Fail's Colm Keaveney, who was eliminated after the fifth count.

Mr Canney was first elected to Galway County Council in 2004. He was Mayor of County Galway between 2007 and 2008.

Danny Healy-Rae (Kerry)

Danny Healy Rae

Cllr Danny Healy-Rae has been elected on the second count in Kerry.

Healy-Rae follows in the footsteps of his brother Michael who topped the poll last night with a staggering 20,378.

The 3,835 transfers Danny received from his brother’s massive 7,165 surplus comfortably pushed the second Healy-Rae across the finish line and into the annals of history.

Danny, a father-of-six, is the eldest son of the late TD Jackie Healy-Rae. He entered the campaign just minutes before the deadline on February 11. He used his father Jackie’s mobile phone during his short two-week election campaign.

People Before Profit:

Gino Kenny (Dublin Mid West)

Gino Kenny

Mr Kenny claimed the fourth seat in the Dublin Mid West constituency. He had been a councillor since 2009 when he was elected to South Dublin County Council. He worked locally as a part time community carer, and he promised that if he was elected to the Dáil he would only accept the average industrial wage.

Yesterday, he said: “The radical left is here to stay. I think people are looking for change. Conventional politics is in decline.”

Overall in Dublin Mid West, of the main parties and groupings, Fine Gael drew the most first-preference votes, at 26.4pc, followed by Sinn Fein at 22.7pc, Fianna Fail at 16.2pc, AAA-PBP at 10.7pc, Social Democrats at 6.1pc, Independent Alliance at 5.9pc, Labour at 5pc and Independents at 4.6pc.

Anti-Austerity Alliance:

Mick Barry


Mick Barry has represented the Cork City North Central ward for eleven years in Cork City Council.

He is a founder member of the We Won’t Pay campaign both nationally and in Cork.

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