As Fianna Fail supporters breathed a huge sigh of relief during the early hours of Sunday morning following the election of Robert Troy, it was a day to forget for Labour candidate Mae Sexton.
The former PD had been hoping to join the party’s chief vote-getter Willie Penrose, taking advantage of any surplus’ built up by the Ballynacargy barrister during the course of last Saturday’s extended 20 hour count in Kenagh.
Despite Penrose securing an impressive 747 votes from the Longford end of the constituency, nearly 100 more than his 2007 figure, Ms Sexton was playing catch-up from the off having taken a modest 6.9 per cent of the vote or 3,960 first preferences.
The elimination of four independent candidates and the constituency’s sole Green Party election hopeful Siobhan Kinihan less than 90 transfers, meaning the Longford County Councillor had to rely on a large percentage of votes coming from Fianna Fail stalwart, Mary O’Rourke who exited proceedings on the second count.
Just 129 votes came from the subsequent distribution of Ms O’Rourke’s 5.3 per cent vote share however, thereby sealing Ms Sexton’s fate at the end of the third count.