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Leinster Leader 14th October 1961

New Kildare Deputy Elected on Sixth Count

For the third successive general election Labour candidate Mr. William Norton headed the poll in Kildare Constituency. He was elected on the first count with 8,015 preference votes, 1,695 over the quota of 6,320. Also elected on that count was outgoing Fine Gael candidate Mr. Gerard Sweetman who polled 7,035 first preferences. The outgoing Fianna Fail deputy, Mr. Patrick Dooley, passed the quota on the second count in which he got 603 of Mr. Norton’s surplus.
The fourth seat - the first time there was a fourth in the constituency due to the addition of parts of Meath and Westmeath - was not filled until the sixth count when the surplus of Norton, Sweetman and Dooley had been distributed and Mr. John Keegan, F.G. and Mr. Terence Groome, F.F. eliminated. The new deputy is Fianna Fail candidate Mr. Brendan Crinion, Killiskillen, Kinnegad, who got 3,908 first preference votes and was eventually brought in on the transfer of Groome’s votes after the elimination of the latter. The electorate was increased by 6,370 but the Government Party Fianna Fail showed a loss on first preference votes from the last election. With two candidates in the field in 1957 they were first choice for 13,170 whereas this year with three candidates they had a first count total of 12,806, a loss of 364 No.1 votes. Mr Dooley, their outgoing candidate, polled 993 votes less than in 1957 when there were only two F.F. candidates, his total standing at 5,865 as against 6,858 last time.


Fine Gael increased its first preference poll by more than 50 percent from the last election. Then with only one candidate in the field, Mr. Sweetman, the first preferences totalled 6,341. This year their three candidates polled 10,775 votes between them and increase of 4,434 with Mr. Sweetman adding 694 to his personal total of first preferences.
Mr. Norton also had more No. 1 votes to credit with 8,015 as against 7,039 (plus 976). Spoiled votes showed an increase of only 13 so that taking a ratio of the figures, the percentage of spoiled was down. The counting that began at 9 a.m. on Thursday finished at 2.15 Friday morning.
Electorate: 44,144 Votes Cast: 32,828 Spoiled: 232 Valid Poll: 31,596 Quota: 6,320


W. Norton, Lab. (outgoing), elected, 8,015; G. Sweetman, F.G. (outgoing), elected, 7,035; P. Dooley, F.F. (outgoing), 5,865; B. Crinion, F.F., 3,908; T. Groome, F.F., 3,033; J. Keegan, F.G., 1,913; C. Chambers, F.G., 1,827.
Second Count: Distribution of Norton’s surplus.
 Dooley plus 603, elected 6,468. Crinion plus 128, 4,036. Groome plus 270, 3,303. Keegan plus 312, 2,225. Chambers plus 382, 2,209.
Third Count: Distribution of Sweetman’s surplus.
 Crinion plus 29, 4,065. Groome plus 39, 3,342. Chambers plus 390, 2,599. Keegan plus 257, 2,482.
Fourth Count: Distribution of Dooley’s surplus.
 Crinion’s plus 35, 4,100. Groome plus 50, 3,392. Chambers plus 44, 2,643. Keegan plus 19, 2,501. Keegan was eliminated and transfer of the votes took place.
Fifth Count. Keegan’s transfer.
Crinion plus 219, 4,319. Chambers plus 1,556, 4,209. Groome plus 120, 3,512. Non-transferable votes, 596. Groome was eliminated and transfer of his votes began.
Sixth Count: Groome’s transfer. Crinion plus 2,345, elected, 6,664. Chambers plus 152, 4,361. Non-transferable votes, 1,015. State of the parties: F.F. 2 seats; F.G. 1; and Labour 1.


Having headed the poll if fell to Mr. Norton to propose the customary vote of thanks to the Co. Registrar, Mr. P. J. O’Neill and his staff. He expressed his appreciation of their courtesy and kindness and also that of the Gardai, polling clerks and presiding officers at the various booths.
He expressed in a very special way his appreciation of all who had voted for him, those who subscribed to election funds, and those who had canvassed for him. He paid a special tribute to the Press for the fair and balanced reporting accorded to each party in the constituency and added that he would strive to serve, with the other representatives, the best interests of the people.
Mr. Sweetman, seconding, said that when an election started it did not appear that they in Fine Gael would have much chance of contesting the last seat. They determined, however, that they would make an all out effort to do that and were very proud that they succeeded very substantially in increasing their vote.
“We went into it as a team,” he said, “and on behalf I thank all for their co-operation.” He added that it remained for all of them to see what they could do in the best interests, not alone of the constituency, but of the country as a whole.


Mr. Dooley, associating himself with the vote of thanks, thanked also those who had worked on their behalf during the election and those who supported them. “The verdict has been given and we accept it,” he said, “and I and my colleagues will do our best to further the interests of our country and of the constituency.”
 Mr O’Neill recorded his thanks for the words of appreciation.

To commemorate this historic election day an article from the Leinster Leader of 1961 on the election of Co. Kildare's new deputy - Fianna Fail candidate Brendan Crinion

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