European Parliament Elections
Ireland elects 12 representatives to the European Parliament. The electoral system is based on single transferable vote and Irish voters thus directly vote for persons representing their country in the European Parliament. Ireland comprises four to five national electoral districts for these elections, which do not correspond with the NUTS structure.
The latest election to the EP was held on 5 June 2009. The opposition parties Fine Gael and Labour were considered winners of the election, with 29.13 percent (four seats) and 13.92 percent (three seats) of the vote respectively, as both improved significantly compared to the previous EP election (2004) and the national elections in 2007. The governing Fianna Fail won just 24.08 percent of the votes (three seats) and the party failed to come first in an Irish national or European vote since 1932, probably much due to the recession that has gripped the country recently. The Socialist Party and the independent candidate M.Harkin each won one seat. The anti-Lisbon Treaty group Libertas failed to win representation in the EP.