All ballot boxes now open in Kerry

All boxes in the Kerry constituency have now been opened.

Indications are that Michael D Higgins has significantly grown his vote in Kerry compared to the 2011 Presidential election.

Counting of votes in the Presidential Election in the Kerry constituency has been underway for over an hour now.

No tally was carried out at the count centre today by any political party but journalists pooled resources and tallied around 17% of the 213 boxes, which includes the postal vote.

That tally, which comes with a health warning, shows Michael D Higgins has 50.2% of the vote, Peter Casey with 27.4%, Liadh Ni Riada on 8.3%, Joan Freeman on 6.3%, Sean Gallagher 5.5% and Gavin Duffy on 2.1%.

The tallies show that one of the highest votes for incumbent Michael D Higgins was at The Glen in south Kerry where he had 70% of the vote.

A box in Castleisland Boys National School saw one of the highest votes for Peter Casey with 38.6%.

One box tallied in Ardfert, a traditional Sinn Fein stronghold, showed Peter Casey 30% getting double the vote of the party’s candidate Liadh Ni Riada (15%), despite it being almost the highest vote recorded in the tally for the Ireland South MEP in the county.

Among some of the spoiled votes was a reference to abortion and a vote for journalist Gemma O’Doherty who failed to secure backing to run in the election.