‘A record breaking four out of five for Enda Kenny and Fine Gael’
There were no Constituency Commission boundary changes here since 2007 and it remained a five-seat constituency.
This constituency was over as a contest following the first count as the leading five contenders were well clear of the rest of the field.
The Fine Gael vote was up 11 points to a remarkable 65% of the first preference vote and with 3.9 quotas they were on track to succeed in their aim of winning four seats. Enda Kenny topped the poll with 17,472 first preferences, the highest in this election and with 1.4 quotas he took the first seat on the first count. He was joined by Michael Ring who was also elected on the first count. Michelle Mulherin, who lost out in 2007 made no mistake in this election and she was in third place on the first count and went on to take the third seat. John O’Mahony was a surprise winner in 2007 and the former Galway All-Ireland winning manager was in fourth place on the first count and went on take the final seat.
Beverley Flynn contested the 2007 election as an independent candidate and she rejoined Fianna Fáil in April 2008. She announced in December 2010 that she would not be contesting the general election. The Fianna Fáil vote was down 8 points and with just one quota spread over two candidates, one seat was as much as they could hope for. Dara Calleary had won a seat here in 2007 at his first attempt and had performed well in the 30th Dáil. He was in fifth place on the first count and went on to take the fourth seat comfortably and Fianna Fáil’s only seat in Mayo. A late addition to the ticket, Lisa Chambers got 3,343 first preferences to leave her well off the pace in eight place and out of contention.
This was a disappointing performance by Labour with former independent deputy Dr. Jerry Cowley winning just 5% to leave him outside the frame on the first count with 0.3 quotas and out of contention.
Sinn Féin surprisingly ran two female candidates – Rose Conway-Walsh and Thérese Ruane - and between them they got just 6.5% and both were too far off the pace to contest for a seat.
Independent local councillor Michael Kilcoyne had been fancied for a seat in the run up to this election but with just under 4,000 first preferences was outside the frame on the first count with just 0.3 quotas and out of contention.