'Ming' Flanagan in strong position to keep MEP seat
INDEPENDENT Luke 'Ming' Flanagan is in a strong position to keep his European Parliament seat.
The fifth count of the Midlands-North-West constituency sees him on 87,333 votes.
That's almost 10,000 votes ahead of Sinn Féin's Matt Carthy who is now on 78,653.
The quota in the constituency is 118,986.
Fine Gael's Mairead McGuinness topped the poll and was elected on the first count yesterday. She got 134,630 votes.
Her running mate, former Rose of Tralee Maria Walsh is in contention to pick up a second seat for Fine Gael.
She is currently on 70,731.
That's more than 12,000 votes ahead of controversial ex-presidential candidate Peter Casey who is on 58,212.
The Green Party's Saoirse McHugh is on 53,068.
Fianna Fáil TD Brendan Smith is on 44,130 and his party colleague Anne Rabbitte stands at 31,198.
Mr Flanagan has been studying transfer patterns since the county began on Sunday.
He posted a prediction on Twitter last night that he will keep his seat and will end up with a vote of around 119,000.
The projection would see Mr Carthy take the third seat with around 93,000 votes. Mr Carthy had feared he would be in a battle for the final seat.
Meanwhile, Mr Flanagan's post predicted Ms Walsh will take the fourth seat with around 85,500 votes.
It suggested that Mr Smith would not get elected but would end up with a final vote of around 69,000.