Paddy McDonald at the count in Cavan Leisure Centre.

McDonald bows out of count and politics

Sinn Féin stalwart eliminated from Bailieborough Cootehill Local area count

Paddy McDonald has lost the council seat he has proudly held for two decades. The Sinn Féin man will be the kingmaker for others as his very respectable vote of 1,112 will be distributed to see which of the remaining five candidates will claim the final four seats.

With the relinquishing of the seat, he is bidding farewell to politics, but he was pleased that he knew his votes would ensure his running mate Stiofán Conaty would likely get the third seat.

"I don't mind young blood coming in and having a go at it, because I have to hand it over some time - now's the time and that's what the people have decided. I'll get on with life."

How many of his 1,112 votes will he hand over to Stiofán Conaty? If he transfers more than 390 then the Ballyhaise man will meet the quota.

If Conaty exceeds the quota of 1,716 then there will be poised for further excitement as his surplus will have to be distributed amongst the remaining candidates in a final count.

Who from the other runners and riders will benefit from the McDonald transfers?

Bailieborough man Niall Smith on 1,233 is geographically best placed to make gains from McDonald's votes.

It's hard to see Lavey's Val Smith, currently on 1,480 and Kingscourt's Clifford Kelly on 1,466 making significant gains - but then any gain is significant at this juncture.

Sitting on 1,355 votes, Kill native Aiden Fitzpatrick is a little back from the group. Will he make up the 100+ votes to catch the others; there's plenty of votes available. You would imagine Fianna Fáil is a more comfortable home than Fine Gael.