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Facts

Ireland

New MEPs: 15

 Group*  Party  MEPs
 Socialist  Labour  1
 Centre-Right  Fianna Fail/
 Fine Gael
10
 Liberal  Ind  1
 Green  Green  2
 United Left    0
 Far Right    0
 Independent    1
*key


Voting System
The country is divided into four regional constituencies, each electing its own MEPs: Dublin 4, Munster 4, Leinster 4, Connacht/Ulster 3. Voters mark their ballot papers in order of preference for the individual candidates.

A candidate who reaches a quota dependent on the total number of votes cast is elected. Excess votes, and those of eliminated candidates are redistributed on the basis of their supporters' second preferences.


Main Parties:
  Fianna Fail
  Fine Gael
  Labour
  Progressive Democrats
  Sinn Fein
 

Reports  

Ireland

Eurovision song contest winner Dana has now become a victor at the polls as she gained a seat in the European Parliament at the expense of Ireland's ruling party Fianna Fail.

The singer-turned-politician campaigned on an anti-abortion platform emphasising family values will stand as an independent.

But aside from this setback, Fianna Fail's vote held up well as the party held on to six seats and actually secured an increased share of the vote - up three points to 38.6%.

Republican Sinn Fein failed to get a seat but also saw its share of the vote increase, nearly doubling to 6%, while the Greens took two seats.

Bucking the trend of low turnouts across Europe, the number of those voting in Ireland jumped by 6% on the last election in 1994, bringing participation up to 50%.
 

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