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Irish general election, 1961

From Academic Kids

Template:Politics of the Republic of Ireland The Irish general election of 1961 was held on October 4, 1961, just over three weeks after the dissolution of the Dáil on September 8. The newly elected members of the 17th Dáil assembled at Leinster House on October 11 when the new Taoiseach and government were appointed.

The general election took place in 38 parliamentary constituencies throughout the Republic of Ireland for 144 seats in the lower house of parliament, Dáil Éireann.

Contents

Campaign

The general election of 1961 saw the three main parties being led by three new leaders. Seán F. Lemass had taken charge of Fianna Fáil in 1959. It was also the first time Fianna Fáil faced a general election campaign without Eamon de Valera. James Dillon took over at Fine Gael in 1959 also. While the Labour Party was npw under the stewardship of Brendan Corish.

While the election was caused by the "crisis" surrounding Ireland's application fo membership of the European Economic Community and various other international affais, little attention was payed to these matters during the campaign. While the 1961 general election has become known as the dullest capaign on record, with the most important issue being the teaching of the Irish language in schools. While Fianna Fáil were fighting the election on their record in government and a reforming theme, Fine Gael presented intself as the party of free enterprise. The Labour Party campaigned strongly against the "conservative" Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael parties. It also favoured major expansion in the public sector.

Result

The results were as follows:

Party Leader Seats First Preferences
# of Seats Gain/Loss % of Dáil # of Votes %
Fianna Fáil Seán F. Lemass 70 -8 48.61   43.8
Fine Gael James Dillon 47 +7 32.63   32.0
Labour Party Brendan Corish 16 +4 11.11   11.6
Clann na Talmhan Joseph Blowick 2 -1 1.38    
National Progressive Democrats Noel Browne 2 +2      
Clann na Poblachta Joseph Barron1 1 +0      
Independents 6 -3      
Others   0 -4      
  144 -3 100.0   100.0

First time TDs

Footnote

  1. After the election, while Seán MacBride was leader of the Clann na Poblachta, Joseph Barron became leader the sole member of the parliamentary party.

See also


Irish General Elections

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