Two Fianna Fáil councillors and another from Fine Gael are set to ignore Micheal Martin and Leo Varadkar's calls to support Michael D Higgins' re-election campaign by publicly backing Sean Gallagher's presidential bid.
The Irish Examiner understands Fianna Fáil councillors Niall Kelleher and Wayne Harding, from Kerry and Meath, and Fine Gael councillor John McCartin, from Leitrim, will officially announce their support for Mr Gallagher in the coming days.
They will be followed by at least four other Independent councillors - Tony Ward from Roscommon, Michael O'Brien from Westmeath, Ger Carthy from Wexford and James Kelly from Laois - who have also privately told Mr Gallagher's supporters they will back his Aras bid.
And, while the 2011 election runner-up has yet to formally enter the race, the fact seven councillors including three members of Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael are now backing his candidacy has been seen as a major boost to his potential campaign.
Although Mr Martin and Mr Varadkar have allowed Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael party members a free vote on nominations, it had been expected that the majority of elected politicians would officially row in behind Mr Higgins' re-election campaign.
However, the decision by Mr Kelleher, Mr Harding and Mr McCartin to instead back Mr Gallagher has been seen as proof of a wider questioning of the re-election bid by grassroots party members.
As previously reported by the Irish Examiner on Wednesday, close associates of Mr Gallagher have been in regular contact with a "coalition of councillors" in recent weeks in order to ensure support for his now likely candidacy.
This, his supporters believe, is because focusing on key councils and councillors in those local authorities may prove crucial in obtaining the backing of four local authorities needed to become an official presidential candidate next month.
In the 2011 presidential race, Mr Gallagher was nominated by Cork city council, Clare county council, Leitrim county council and Meath county council, before asking other councils which had hinted at support to facilitate other candidates to contest the election.