Sinn Féin's Mary Lou McDonald received the most votes to become Taoiseach, but Dáil adjourns deadlocked
The first sitting of the 33rd Dáil Éireann (Irish Parliament) after Ireland's General Election was held on February 20, but no one has received enough votes to be named the next Taoiseach.
The four main parties - Fianna Fáil, Sinn Féin, Fine Gael, and Green - each put forward a nomination for the new Taoiseach, but none of the candidates clinched the necessary 80 vote majority to claim the role.
Of the four nominees for Taoiseach, Sinn Féin's Mary Lou McDonald received the most votes to become Taoiseach. It was the first time a member of neither Fine Gael nor Fianna Fail received the most votes.
The breakdown of votes went as such:
Sinn Féin's Mary Lou McDonald won 45, 84 against, 29 abstentions.
Fianna Fáil's Michael Martin won 41, 97 against, 19 abstentions.
Fine Gael’s Leo Varadkar won 36, 107 against, 16 abstentions.
Green Party Eamon Ryan won 12, 115 against and 28 abstentions.
While Ireland’s general election saw Sinn Féin emerge as the most popular party claiming a historic 24 percent of the overall vote, they did not enter the 33rd Dáil Éireann with the most representatives, but only by a small margin.
Ultimately, Fianna Fáil entered with 38 seats, Sinn Féin 37, Fine Gael 35, and the Green Party 12. Smaller left-wing parties and independents filled out the remainder of the 160 seats.
Fianna Fáil's slight advantage, however, was equalized after party member TD Seán Ó Fearghaíl was re-elected as speaker of the Dáil, Ceann Comhairle, with a vote of 130 - 28.
Having not been elected again as Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar officially resigned from the position on Thursday evening after the conclusion of the sitting of the Dáil. His administration will remain in a ‘caretaker’ position until a new Taoiseach is chosen and the government is formed.
You can listen to Varadkar's speech after he learned he was not re-elected as Taoiseach here:
The Dáil Éireann is now adjourned until March 5. If no Taoiseach is selected during that session, the current government will carry out the upcoming St. Patrick's Day events and engagements.