The Irish airforce delivers ballot papers to a remote island to ensure everyone gets the chance to cast their votes in today’s polls. The fate of Ireland’s government rests on how badly the governing party performs as the country votes in the European and local elections.
Two additional parliamentary by-elections could also prove crucial. If the governing Fianna Fail party loses those seats and suffers a complete wipeout, winning 20-25 per cent or less of council seats and losing two of its four European parliament seats, the government could fall. The main opposition party Fianna Gael and the anti-Lisbon Treaty party Libertas, both hope to profit from Fianna Fail’s poor ratings. The Czech Republic, which currently holds the EU’s rotating presidency also votes in the European Parliament election today. Apathy could prove to be a major stumbling block. The President, Vaclav Klaus is renowned for his Euro scepticism. “European elections are not necessary,” he says. The latest Euro election surveys show the Civic Democrats edging ahead of the Social Democrats.