Laois–Offaly

Profile

Province: Rest of Leinster

Seats: 5

Current TDs: 1 FG, 1 SF, 2 FF, 1 IND

Projection: 1 FG, 1 SF, 2 FF, 1 IND

Gains

n/a

Losses

n/a

Analysis

April 2021

This one is interesting with the changes made. FF, FG and SF are all still comfortable for a seat each. While FF’s total is marginally behind SF and FG (all three are separated by less than 1.5%), the FPV split between their candidates based on the historic data puts them into a position to squeeze into a second seat – a great illustration of how important vote management can be when you have close races with multiple candidates. This is very marginal call that comes down to a fraction of a percentage point, and any deviation from the historic data in the vote management (which is quite likely, given how many assumptions have to be made with it) could easily flip this one way or the other.

The other change here is Carol Nolan, and with Independent numbers ticking up, she’s a little ahead of the second candidate from the three big parties, particularly due to transfer friendliness. The margins here are similarly fine, so with current patterns the last two seats will be very difficult to call.

January 2021

SF, FF and FG will all fancy their chances at bringing home a second candidate; FF have two incumbents in a constituency that has been traditionally part of their heartlands, SF will be gunning for the seat held by former SF TD Carol Nolan (IND) and FG will be looking to cash in on a huge polling bump. As of now, the model favours SF and FG succeeding, but it indicates that it will be quite close.

The only real intrigue outside of this relates to Nolan’s seat (on a side note, I am unclear why she hasn’t joined Aontú, an ideological match, who seem to have plenty of funding to help her with and would benefit from a second TD). She was helped out by SF transfers and a bad polling environment for FG in 2020, neither seems to be the case this time round and both with put the squeeze on her, and right now it’s tough to see her path back to the Dáil.

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