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Green Party: We have 'real chance' of getting all three candidates elected in Europe

Cllr Ciarán Cuffe, Green Party Dublin candidate for the European Parliament Elections and Cllr Claire Byrne, who is seeking re-election to Dublin City Council, canvassing in Ringsend earlier this month. Picture: Moya Nolan

Green Party TDs have accused other election candidates of “hijacking” their campaign issues as the party urges voters, both young and old, to give them their number ones on Friday.

Party leader Eamon Ryan said there is a “real chance” its three Green MEP candidates could get elected and there are hopes the party will at least double its local representation.

“We want young people to come out and vote, to vote on their climate, to vote for their community and to vote Green,” said Mr Ryan.

Polls predict Cllr Ciaran Cuffe may win a seat in Dublin while Senator Grace O'Sullivan has growing support in Ireland South and Saoirse McHugh in Midlands-North West's has performed well in debates.

Running 82 candidates, the Greens hope they will at least elect 25 councillors, doubling their current local representation.

Mr Ryan also believes there is a “real chance” its three MEP candidates could get over the line too.

The European Parliament is one of the few places where parties can influence the shape of the future of agriculture, economies and where elected members also had a global reach, he said at a final press conference for the party's election campaign.

The green movement is the “only alternative” to counter support for the far right in Europe, he added.

But he also cautioned that as few as 20% of 18 to 30-year-olds voted five years ago in Ireland's local and European elections and there was a huge need to get the young vote out this time.

Mr Cuffe said Europe could fund transforming council houses into A-rated energy homes as well as hundreds of kilometres of cycle lanes across the country.

This is the climate change election. We are facing a serious crisis.

TD Catherine Martin accused other parties of "hijacking" the party's policies and platforms and of "greenwashing" their campaigns ahead of Friday's vote .

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