Change and Continuity in Irish Politics: The General Election of 2007

The European Legacy 15 (3):341-352 (2010)
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Abstract

Bertie Ahern, the incumbent Taoiseach or Prime Minister of Ireland, was elected to a third term in the general election of 24 May 2007. While Ahern's party, Fianna F il, was able to retain its governing coalition, the level of support of some of the other parties changed dramatically. Fine Gael, the principal opposition party, saw its number of seats in the parliament, D il ireann, increase by nineteen. Some of the minor parties did less well than expected or compared to previous elections. Only the Greens maintained their six representatives. As a result, they were rewarded with a share in the new government. This election suggests that, while Irish society is changing rapidly, the political system is changing more slowly and subtly. This article examines the election results in terms of the fate of the political parties and focuses on one constituency, Tipperary South, to illustrate trends in Irish electoral politics

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