Voting is over in Ireland and pollsters have reported a steady stream of voters, indicating a good turn out. In the last European parliamentary elections some 60% cast their ballots.
Official results are published on Sunday but opinion polls predict the ruling centrist Fianna Fail party will get a drubbing.
Prime Minister Brian Cowen and his coalition government are seen by many voters as failing to to protect the country from the global recession.
The pan-European Libertas party, led by Declan Ganley, is expected to perform poorly too, winning none of the 12 Irish seats in the European Parliament.
Libertas sprang up in Ireland to campaign against the Lisbon Treaty, which the Irish then rejected in a referendum last year.
Ireland is planning a second referendum on the EU’s new reform treaty this Autumn. The party expected to gain most in in the poll is the opposition Fine Gael.
High Irish turn out for EU poll