Was it the nightmare before Christmas?
Not quite, but it is clear that the performance in the by-elections in Dublin, Cork, and Wexford has proved a Black Friday for Fine Gael and, in particular, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar.
Fine Gael failed to secure any seats in the four by-elections, while the Green Party, Fianna Fáil, and Sinn Féin each made gains.
With Fianna Fail taking two seats and the Green Party another, there is a prospect that a viable alternative government may already be taking shape, ahead of next year’s general election.
FF leader Micheál Martin and Green Party leader Eamon Ryan served together in the 2007-2011 coalition government.
Fine Gael will still be able to pass its legislative programme in the Dáil under the confidence-and-supply arrangement with Fianna Fáil, but that deal is due to run out in the new year, with a March poll expected.
The fact that Fianna Fáil won two seats, while Fine Gael won none, shifts the balance of power in Leinster House.