27 February 2011
by Marian O'Flaherty
The fate of Kerry South was finally decided this afternoon as Fine Gael's Brendan Griffin and Independents Tom Fleming and Michael Healy-Rae were elected as TDs at the Killarney Sports and Leisure Complex count-centre.
Kerry County Councillor and Keel native Brendan Griffin was elected shortly after 1pm, having exceeded the quota of 11,096 on the fifth count with 12,636 votes.
Count six saw Fleming (on 10,697) and Healy-Rae (on 10,326) elected – Griffin's transfers failing to give running mate and sitting TD, Rathmore's Tom Sheahan (on 9409) the push he needed to make the final seat. Neither Fleming nor Healy-Rae reached the quota.
Fianna Fáil's John O'Donoghue - who had been eliminated on count three - transferred well to both Fleming and Healy-Rae which was enough to stave off challenges firstly from Gleeson (eliminated on count four) and then from Sheahan (eliminated on count six).
Brendan Griffin (FG), Michael Healy-Rae (Ind) and Tom Fleming (Ind) replace outgoing TDs John O'Donoghue (FF), Jackie Healy-Rae (Ind) and Tom Sheahan (FG) in Kerry South.