Newly elected TD, Marian Harkin
"This may have been a tsunami for Sinn Féin but it was also an avalanche for independents" says Deputy Marian Harkin as she celebrated her win at the Sligo/Leitrim count this evening.
Elected on the fourteenth count, Marian said "it was obvious today that there has been a huge wave of support for independent candidates in this election. And they are independents who are mainly from rural areas, many who have been elected for the first time."
She said this sends out a clear mandate to the government and warned that people in rural Ireland were not getting their fair share "and regional policy must become national policy" to benefit everyone in a much fairer way.