Counting votes in Portlaoise.
Ireland South stretches over 350km from the Dingle peninsula north east to Bray, taking in the counties of Carlow, Clare, Cork, Kerry, Kilkenny, Tipperary, Wexford, Wicklow, Limerick, Waterford and now Laois and Offaly.
The four seater is now a five seater in this election because the UK plans to leave the EU. The last seat will be put into cold storage until Brexit happens.
A total of 23 candidates of various hues have entered the race. When it comes down to it there are no more than eight contenders.
Brian Crowley had been the dominant force here for 25 years, going back to his first election in 1994. He won over 100,000 first preference votes in every election since 1999 and secured a massive 180,329 votes five years ago.
Fianna Fáil hope to capitalise on the departure of Brian Crowley with Malcolm Byrne running alongside Cork TD Billy Kelleher who is the heavy favourite to top the poll, drawing on the Crowley vote in Cork.
The party has divided the constituency in two for the purposes of campaigning and canvassing, with Kelleher getting Cork, Kerry, Limerick county and Clare, while Byrne has the six Leinster counties. Waterford and Tipperary and Limerick city are open to both candidates to canvass and campaign in.
With a population of 600,000 Cork is a crucial lynch pin for all candidates, particularly those based in Munster. In 2014 three Cork based candidates were elected including Crowley, Deirdre Clune and Liadh ní Riada.
Also elected was Munster based candidate Sean Kelly who is based in Kerry. The former GAA president will surely fancy his chances of returning especially with Crowley out of the picture.
All are now vying for the Crowley vote with many expected to go to Kelleher.
But Clune will also be in the hunt. She nearly missed out on a seat in 2014 when Simon Harris ran her close. His constituency colleague Andrew Doyle in Wicklow is now running on the three strong Fine Gael ticket and is focusing on the counties of Laois, Offaly, Wicklow, Kilkenny, Carlow and Wexford. He believes that Leinster should have an MEP. The only area of the country that does not have an MEP is the six counties of Leinster.
Mick Wallace is a late entrant into the race.
Labour candidate Sheila Nunan is also trying to campaign across the entire constituency. As president of the Irish Congress of Trade Unions and outgoing general secretary of the Irish National Teachers' Organisation.
The inclusion of Laois and Offaly in this constituency makes it feasible that unlike in 2014, at least one MEP will come from south Leinster.
Fianna Fáil believes it has an outside chance of taking a second seat in this constituency.
Complex transfers will be the order of the day.
There are no Laois Offaly based candidates.
Votes will be counted in Cork.
On the Ballot Paper
Allan Brennan -Non Party
Project manager from Greystones in Co Wicklow
Malcolm Byrne- Fianna Fáil
Wexford native and councillor from Gorey
Dolores Cahill - Non-party
Scientist from Clonmel in Tipperary with links to the Irish Freedom Party
Deirdre Clune - Fine Gael
Outoging MEP from Cork City
Andrew Doyle - Fine Gael
Wicklow TD from Wicklow Town
Paddy Fitzgerald - Non Party
Retired farmer from Cahir in Tipperary
Breda Patricia Gardner - Non-party
Complementary Health Therapist from Thomastown, Co Kilkenny
Theresa Heaney - Non-party
Homemaker from, Timoleague, Co. Cork
Billy Kelleher - Fianna Fáil
Cork TD from White's Cross, Co. Cork
Seán Kelly - Fine Gael
Outgoing MEP from Gortroe, Killarney, Co. Kerry
Peter Madden - Non Party
Environmental Educator from Roscrea in Co Tipperary
Liam Minehan - Non-party
Farmer from Nenagh, Co. Tipperary
Liadh ní Riadh - Sinn Féin
Outgoing MEP from Baile Mhic Ire, Maighchromtha, Co. Chorcaí
Sheila Nunan - Labour Party
Teacher who lives in Kilternan, Dublin 18
Diarmuid Patrick O'Flynn - Non party
Journalist & campaigner from Ballyhea, Charleville, Co. Cork
Peter O'Loughlin - Identity Ireland
Teacher who lives in Mallow, Co Cork
Grace O'Sullivan - Green Party
Senator from Tramore in Co Waterford
Walter Ryan-Purcell - Non-party
Tour operator from Killarney Co Kerry
Maurice Joseph Sexton - Non-party
Scientist from Cork city
Jan Van De Ve -Direct Democracy Ireland
Entrepeneur from Gorey in Co Wexford
Adrienne Wallace - Soldidarity - People Before Profit
Office Administrator from Carlow
Mick Wallace - Independents 4 Change
TD from Co Wexford
Colleen Worthington - Non party
Homemaker from Togher in Cork
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