Yates' Prediction: Government parties will be doing well to keep two seats in Carlow-Kilkenny

Newstalk Breakfast looks at each election constituency, studying the candidates and predicting how they will perform

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Ann Phelan. Image: RollingNews.ie

The Government parties will be doing well to hold on to two seats in the five-seat Carlow-Kilkenny constituency, according to Newstalk Breakfast presenter Ivan Yates.

Sitting TDs: John Paul Phelan (FG), Pat Deering (FG), Ann Phelan (LAB), John McGuinness (FF) and Bobby Aylward (FF)

Ivan says there was a "remarkable performance" by the Government parties in the last election, "decimating Fianna Fáil" by winning four out of five seats.

However, one of those seats has since been claimed by Fianna Fáil's Bobby Aylward following the 2015 by-election. 

Can the Government parties repeat their stellar 2011 performance? "The answer to that of course is no," Ivan said. "They'll be doing well to hold two out of five seats".

Carlow-Kilkenny

Carlow-Kilkenny is a five-seat constituency.

There are 15 candidates running.

All five sitting TDs are seeking re-election.

Predicted outcome

Yates is calling the result as 2 Fine Gael, 2 Fianna Fáil and 1 Sinn Féin.

1. John McGuinness (FF)

2. John Paul Phelan (FG)

3. Bobby Aylward (FF)

4. Kathleen Funchion (SF)

5. Pat Deering (FG)

"John McGuinness is of course one of them who favour a grand coalition of Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil," Ivan observed. "Therefore he might be a minister in that Government".

Ivan said that while Bobby Aylward won't get as many votes as he did in the by-election, as the Fianna Fáil votes will be shared across three candidates. "I think Bobby will probably end up will the last seat, but will get elected," he explained.

He also pointed out the 'tremendous performance' of Sinn Féin's Kathleen Funchion in the by-election, suggesting she could get a seat this time around. 

"Ann Phelan can't hold her seat. She has no running mate, so the Labour vote in Carlow is going to collapse," he predicted.

"There will be one Carlow TD," Ivan concluded. "[Fine Gael's Pat Deering] is the worst located candidate in the constituency, but my feeling is he will be ahead of [Fine Gael's] David Fitzgerald".

You can listen to Ivan Yates' constituency prediction on Newstalk.com's Carlow-Kilkenny constituency page.