Former Justice Minister Alan Shatter has lost his seat in Dublin-Rathdown in what was the first big shock of Election 2016.
He was overtaken by Fine Gael colleague Josepha Madigan, as well as Green Party candidate Catherine Martin on the sixth count.
Three outgoing Labour ministers are at risk of losing their seats in the electoral bloodbath including Tanaiste and party leader Joan Burton, Alex White and Kathleen Lynch.
— Irish Examiner (@irishexaminer) February 27, 2016
Labour stalwart Joe Costello eliminated on 7th count in Dublin Central #iestaff— McConnellDaniel (@McConnellDaniel) February 27, 2016
With the outgoing Fine Gael-Labour partnership staring at a humiliating defeat, the electorate sent a resounding message to the established order and raised the prospect of weeks of protracted negotiations on potential coalitions.
Early indications suggest a widespread disaffection with mainstream parties and austerity mirroring a movement across Europe, including Spain, Portugal and Greece, where parliaments have been crippled by the voter schism.
The predicted outcome would be all the more remarkable as the political powerhouses, Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael, struggle to secure support of 50% of the electorate for the first time in history.