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Carrigaline vote-topper McGrath now tipped for Dáil push to follow brother

June 19th, 2024 9:00 AM

By Kieran O'Mahony

Carrigaline vote-topper McGrath now tipped for Dáil push to follow brother Image
McGrath topped the poll in Carrigaline.

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LAST time around, Fianna Fáil’s Seamus McGrath topped the poll in the newly-created Carrigaline area with an impressive 4,257 first preference votes.

Five years on, he again topped the poll but also managed to increase his votes to a whopping 5,191, which was the highest in the country. He secured 2,876 more votes than his nearest rival, Ben Dalton O’Sullivan, who was also elected on the first count, with both having reached the quota of 2,057.

It’s not surprising, so, that the brother of sitting TD and Minister for Finance Michael McGrath has indicated that he might run for a Dáil seat if the opportunity arises.

Fianna Fáil party bosses must surely be looking at his potential to boost their numbers, at some point in the future.

Speaking to The Southern Star following his election at the count centre in County Hall last Saturday night, Cllr McGrath said he was shocked with the high number of first preference votes.

‘I am shocked. While I thought the campaign was going well, I certainly didn’t think that I’d get that level of support. Needless to say, I’m truly overwhelmed and want to express my gratitude to the voters for putting their trust in me yet again,’ said Cllr McGrath.

‘The work will continue and for me it’s a tremendous result … I’m genuinely humbled.’

With talk of his brother perhaps being ear-marked for a role in Europe, Seamus’ bid to rise to national prominence may come sooner than some expect, but only time will tell.

Despite running a ‘no poster’ campaign, Independent candidate Ben Dalton O’Sullivan – contesting his second local election having won his first seat five years ago as a 19-year-old student – said he was ‘both tired and delighted’ to have won the second seat.

‘I did not expect that vote of 2,315 – my tally people had that figure lower and we were surprised to have reached the quota in the first count. I had a small team but we worked hard and we canvassed as much as we could without posters, but we met a lot of people on the doors,’ said Ben.

‘I’ve loved the past five years serving the people in the Carrigaline LEA and I look forward to doing the same for the next five,’ he added.

Fine Gael took two seats with both Jack White and Una McCarthy contesting their first local elections, having been co-opted in recent years. White reached the quota and took the third seat, while Fianna Fáil’s Audrey Buckley took the fourth, followed by McCarthy.

Sinn Féin’s Eoghan Fahy took the final seat and now has the distinction of being the only SF councillor on Cork County Council.

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