Monday 21 October 2019

Mairead McGuinness wins European seat thanks to massive transfers from Jim Higgins

Midlands North West

FG candidate Mairead McGuinness with Taoiseach Enda Kenny and some young supporters
FG candidate Mairead McGuinness with Taoiseach Enda Kenny and some young supporters

Caroline Crawford

FINE GAEL's Mairead McGuinness has been elected to the European Parliament in the Midlands Northwest constituency.

McGuinness was elected on the 10th count after she received 28,009 votes from her eliminated running mate Jim Higgins, pushing her to 135,698 and breaking the 129,290 quota.

Speaking after the win, McGuinness said she was delighted and thanked her "good friend and colleague" Jim Higgins for the transfers.

She added that this was her first election as part of a government party but said the level of transfers from Higgins and her own votes showed that despite the difficulties for the party and the government in these elections, there remained a core of people who understood the difficulties of governing after an economic collapse.

"We have a huge amount of work to do but this gives me a great mandate to continue my work in the European Parliament with my colleagues in Government and I will not be found wanting," she added.

McGuinness said she had spent every weekend since September travelling across the 15-county constituency getting to know the people.

Meanwhile, Matt Carthy is now just 2,798 votes away from taking the third seat.

While Marian Harkin and Pat 'The Cope' Gallagher are still fighting it out for the final seat, Gallagher's running mate Thomas Byrne is not ruling himself out.

He has said he's considering calling for a recount because of the small number of votes separating him from Gallagher.

Gallagher is currently on 61,684 while Byrne stands at 65,898.

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