Donegal returns five TDs after
THE dust is beginning
to settle in Co Donegal after a bruising general
election that saw five TDs elected to represent the
county for the next five years.
Fianna Fáil TD., Charlie McConalogue produced a
stunning result, topping the poll and comfortably
surpassing the 12,218 quota with a surplus. It was a
longer wait until his party colleague Pat 'The Cope'
Gallagher; Sinn Féin's Pearse Doherty and Fine
Gael's Joe McHugh got over the line. The fifth and
final seat produced a nail-biting dogfight between
Killybegs Independent Thomas Pringle and Sinn Féin's
Pádraig MacLochlainn with the Buncrana man
ultimately becoming the biggest casualty of General
Election 2016 in Donegal.
The five TDs elected to represent
Donegal in the General Election 2016.
Sinn Féin will be
reflecting for some time on its decision to run
three Donegal candidates in a year when the number
of available seats had reduced from six to five due
to a constituency shake-up.
MacLochlainn was one of almost 50 sitting TDs who
failed to get re-elected. Other notable casualties
nationwide included Labour ministers Kathleen Lynch
and Alex White and Fine Gael deputy leader, Dr James
Notably in Donegal, Independents including
Letterkenny solicitor Dessie Shiels; Twin Towns'
candidate Tim Jackson and Killybegs-based Niamh
Kennedy, polled well in their first outings as
national election candidates.
Total voter turn-out in Donegal was 62.8% compared
to a national turnout of 65.2%. From an electorate
of 117,675, there were 73,303 valid votes and 654
Meanwhile, as local celebrations and commiserations
continue for the next few days and counting
continues today in several other constituencies, all
eyes will turn to the national stage to see if a
stable government can be formed.
Regardless of the possible permutations, choices and
soul-searching, one thing is certain - people who
polled superbly well, like McConalogue and those who
got in by a whisker, like Pringle, will have no
appetite for doing it all over again.