#GE16 Exit Polls show Government parties set for a beating

Well it’s all over and we are just waiting for the vote to be counted but two exit polls make terrible reading for the government and should make Fianna Fail and Sinn Fein happy.



FG 24.8%, Lab 7.1%, FF 21.1%, SF 16%, IND 11%, AAA-PBP 4.7%, SD 3.7%, GP 3.6%, IA 3%, REN 2.4%, OTH 2.6%

Irish Times/MRBI


Some takeaways

  1. If true this is Enda Kenny’s worst ever General Election performance as leader, he scored 27.1% in 2007 and 36.1% in 2011.
  2. Fianna Fail are back in business; in places like Munster and parts of Dublin, the party will increase its seats and should come just behind Fine Gael.
  3. Sinn Fein are now the leaders of the left. If you look at the RTE exit poll, it now has more support than Labour, People Before Profit/Anti-Austerity Alliance and Social Democrats combined.
  4. The Green Party has done very well. 3.5% is a strong showing for a party wiped out in 2011, which proves the staying power of the party as a whole.
  5. Labour’s disaster is going to be brutal as they are set to suffer a double digit swing against them.
  6. A second election within a few months is very likely in these polls. Fianna Fail will now feel confident and will seek to become the largest party next time. Moreover, on those numbers it is hard to see how Enda Kenny and Joan Burton remain as party leaders.

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  • Mirrorballman


  • Gingray

    The rate data on second preferences is interesting, sinn fein are underperforming

  • Jag

    Unexpectedly rotten day for FG. Expectedly rotten day for Labour. Kinda-okay, kinda-lacklustre day for SF. Goldenballs day for FF. Still too early to tell with the others, and how vote % translates into seats.

    Remember, FF is going on tour in the next couple of years, and coming to a diamond, GAA club, chamber of commerce, Orange Hall even, near you!

  • Croiteir

    I will believe it when I see it – an turas is vey unlikely

  • Roger

    Goldenballs day for FF?

    The coalition are on track to loose 18% (open to correction there) of the vote they got in 2011 but FF gains just 5%? That’s 13% gone elsewhere.

  • Robin Keogh

    You are correct, but why am i so happy !?

  • Lionel Hutz

    What’s it going to take for Sinn Fein to make a massive breakthrough?

    Fianna Fail impode and SF pick up just a few percent. Labour implode, SF pick up just a few per cent. Huge turmoil and angst against austerity and this is it?

    What happens when things get better?

  • Jag

    I would downgrade the assessment of SF performance from “lacklustre” to “disappointing”. Yes, SF will claim victory by referring to the 2011 election, yes, SF should have around 8 additional TDs net from 14 today, and probably around 8 senators later on from 3 today, yes, SF will score a double in Louth and see the first woman elected a TD there, and there are a half dozen other positives.

    But they look like losing Padraig McLochlann, their Dublin West candidate was beaten by Joan Burton, and after five years of austerity, and in contest with the two amigos, one of whom ruined the economy, and the other imposed austerity, the best you can do is add eight TDs? Were there ever any more benign conditions for SF in which to triumph? Who knows what the future holds, but the likelihood is we won’t see such bad economic conditions for a generation. Has SF plateaued? I think it did back in 2014.

    When the opinion polls were putting SF at mid 20s % in 2014, when it took three MEPs in spectacular fashion in May 2014, when it took 16% of the local seats, it looked as if it had momentum behind it.Then the Irish economy saw the first green shoots of recovery. The momentum clearly stopped in 2015, – we saw that in Dublin South West in particular with Paul Murphy whopping SF and Ruth Coppinger walking past SF in Dublin West. FF “the Republican Party” has clearly been forgiven, the hard/ultra left isn’t just snapping at SF’s ankles now, it’s taking lumps of flesh and there are a number of smaller credible alternatives, SocDems, Renua, Independent Alliance.

    Wouldn’t offer you great odds for SF keeping its 22 projected seats in the next Dail in 2021.

  • Jag

    Looks to me like FF will add 8%. SF will take around 5%. Where’s the other 5%? Clearly in Independents and small parties.

    FF not back to its 40% Halcyon days but it’s had a splendid day on its journey back to the Promised Land.

  • Jag

    I don’t think FF have any choice, but to carry through on the commitment to contest elections in the North. They need to keep the SF wolf from the door.

    I see Thomas Byrne who has represented FF at several events in the North recently is back in the Dail, topping the poll in his constituency.

  • Gingray

    By getting under 14% of all first preferences?

    Did your local candidate get in?

    This is a bittersweet result for SF, given Labours collapse. Surely that’s a worry?

  • Croiteir

    Jag – there was no commitment. If you read the announcement Michael Martin made was conditional. Everyone just accepts it as a commitment.
    I accept the comment about Byrne and also note Eamon Ó Cuiv, whose commitment to the north and specifically prisoners has topped Galway West.
    I also accept that they need to take the fight to SF in the north. But do they?

  • Robin Keogh

    Yup, my guy got in on the second count. Delighted with the result all round, especially with the improvement in our transfer status. Slow steady progress with many candidates in pole position to take seats next time out.