Many people would never have anticipated a win by labour in Portlaoise but an mixture of factors combined, not least of which was well-known, local candidat to deliver an apparent miracle in Portlaoise.
Early Monday morning, Labour Party members celebrated as Noel Touhy took the sixth seat for his party in the most unlikely result of the local elections in Laois.
Cllr Touhy, a retired prison officer, realised that the personal element in the win was significant.
“It is a huge result for me personally and for my family and team - we haven’t had a day off in six weeks. It is a bad day for my party,” he said.
He said is well known in Portlaoise but also represented the real Labour values. He said people have not deserted Labour but opted to vote indpendents.
“We worked hard. We took no day off. I had the most extraodinary director of elections John O’Mahony who was willing to go from morning to night. When you have that support you have a great chance,” he said.
He said the solution to Ireland’s to problems is to get people working. He said he told voters that he did not know what being a councillor entailed but he had promised to do his best for Portlaoise.