Female candidacies in 2009 local elections

Claire McGing and Adrian Kavanagh (August 5, 2010)

A report on trends as to female candidate selection levels for the upcoming 2014 Local Elections can be viewed here.  

In light of ongoing discussion in relation to number of female TDs, this piece – a section from an article we wrote on last year’s local elections that we never managed to find a home for (sob!) – might be of interest as it gives an overview of female particicipation in electoral politics at a local level, with specific reference to last year’s contests.

17.1% of all candidates in the 2009 local elections were females. This figure marginally bucks the trend set over the previous two decades of increasing levels of female participation in local electoral contests, wherein female participation rates had increased from 11.0% in 1985 to 14.0% in 1991, 15.6% in 1999 and 18.1% in 2004. Continue reading

Red C Poll 27 June: How Do Figures Translate Into Seats?

Adrian Kavanagh (28 June 2010)

The latest Red C poll points to a remarkably consistent trend in terms of support for the three largest parties – again underlining the significant “Gilmore Gale” increase in support for Labour but also highlighting the strenght of Fine Gael support. But how would these figures translate into seats should these results be replicated in a general election? This analysis suggests that the link between party support and seats is not as clear as may be thought, despite the relative proportionality of the Irish electoral system.  This analysis suggests that, on these figures, Fine Gael would win 65 seats, Labour would win 48 seats, Fianna Fail would win 46 seats, Sinn Fein would win 5 seats, while 2 seats would be won by independents and other small parties. On these figures, the Green Party would fail to win a seat. Continue reading

Where bloweth the Gilmore Gale? Precedents from 1992 and 1969

Adrian Kavanagh (18 July 2010)

Recent polls from RedC and Irish Times/Isbos-MRBI have focused significant attention on the Labour Party and point to significant gains being made by that party, as tantamount to a “Gilmore Gale”. But the extent to which these significant shifts in support levels towards the party can be translated into seat gains sufficient to allow Labour challenge the traditional dominance of Fine Gael and Fianna Fail may be shaped by the party’s geography of support, which will be studied in this post.   Continue reading

Fine Gael rurality key to Enda’s survival?

Adrian Kavanagh (17 June 2010)

The geography of Fine Gael support offers some insight as to why Enda Kenny survived the challenge to his leadership today.  The party’s strength in rural, and especially western, parts of the state, relative to its weakness in Dublin, saw high numbers of Fine Gael TDs, MEPs and Senators being elected from these areas, many of whom proved to be Kenny supporters in the leadership contest. Had Fine Gael won more seats in 2007 in the eastern and more urban parts of the state, where the Bruton supporters tended to predominate, the result of the leadership poll could have been different.

Fine Gael support by constituency in 2007 General Election

Fine Gael support by constituency in 2007 General Election

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An Ireland Divided?

By Elaine Byrne

Since 2007, the Irish Times and Sunday Business Post polls suggest that a fundamental shift in the Irish party system is occurring. Any analysis of electoral volatility often focuses on the left/right divide.

But are we asking the wrong question? Is the ongoing earthquake within the Irish political landscape also because of an emerging divide between rural and urban Ireland, between a young Ireland saddled with dept and an older more conservative Ireland? Are their undertones within the current Fine Gael leadership contest which further suggest this?

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