Sinn Féin and Fine Gael draw level in polls

Sinn Féin and Fine Gael are now the joint most popular parties in Ireland, according to the first opinion poll since the local and European elections.

In addition, despite the controversy over the arrest of Gerry Adams in connection with the murder of Jean McConville, he was the only party leader to see an improvement in the popularity ratings among voters.

Reflecting the trends in last month’s elections, Sinn Féin and Independent candidates particularly are capitalising on a backlash by voters against the traditional mainstream parties and bailout-imposed austerity measures.

Bearing the brunt is the junior government coalition partner Labour, whose support has plunged 7% among voters.

Amid an intensifying battle for the leadership of the party — after Tánaiste Eamon Gilmore stood aside ahead of an expected heave — its support has nose-dived from 11% to just 4%.

The Red C poll, carried out for bookmaker Paddy Power, also reveals a 3% drop in support for the Coalition’s main party Fine Gael, down to 22%, one of its lowest showings since being elected to power in 2011.

Fianna Fáil has also dipped in the popularity stakes by 3% to leave them securing 18% of the overall vote, according to the study.

This is only 1% higher than they performed after their disastrous outing at the last general election, as voters punished them for their governing role during the economic collapse.

Sinn Féin is up 4% in the poll to 22% support — making it the most popular party in the country alongside Fine Gael.

Independents have cornered nearly a third of the electorate’s votes, rising 9% up to 32%.

© Irish Examiner Ltd. All rights reserved

Email Updates

Receive our lunchtime briefing straight to your inbox

Related Articles

More in this Section

DJ: I was dancing to drug gang’s tune

Cork to US flights get green light for takeoff

Taoiseach denies any NY snub by Donald Trump

Families of missing persons plead for more resources for searching


Breaking Stories

Republican charged over death of a Jean McConville has dementia, court told

Future of Midlands Regional Hospital 'uncertain'

Leo Varadkar: Those who paid water bills can't end up worse off

Repak encourages recycling this Christmas

Lifestyle

100 years ago Cork knuckled down to the coldest winter in living memory

For Simon Delaney, Christmas is the most magical time of the year

Hallelujah for the priest whose song went viral

Festive nights out that you cannot miss this Christmas

More From The Irish Examiner