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#Elections2019: Labour leader accepts party 'fell victim to the Green surge'

#Elections2019: Labour leader accepts party 'fell victim to the Green surge'
Labour Party leader Brendan Howlin speaking to the media at the European elections count at the RDS in Dublin this morning. Photo: Leah Farrell/RollingNews.ie

Labour leader Brendan Howlin has said his party will have 20 more seats after the local elections but conceded none of his three MEP candidates will be elected.

Mr Howlin, speaking at the RDS, accepted the Labour Party “fell victim to the Green surge” but said he is willing to explore a so-called progressive civic alliance.

Mr Howlin said the swing to the Green Party is a “signal to us all” in politics that real action on the environment is now demanded by voters.

“Not at all disappointed. Everyone has been impacted by the Green surge including us. But we had 37 incumbents looking to be re-elected.

"We will have at least 57 seats, so that is 20 new councillors in key areas that are targets for us. So we see the building I expected to happen happening, we would have liked a greater pace of increase but that was impacted upon by the Green surge,” he said.

He said he will meet with Eamon Ryan next week to discuss how the two parties can work at council level.

I had discussions with Eamon Ryan in advance of polling day and I am going to meet him next week to look at the number of seats we have and see what we can do together.

Mr Howlin said he is also willing to work with the Social Democrats both at local and national level.

He rejected the result puts his leadership into question.

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