In our efforts to branch out our coverage, we've decided to provide some coverage of the ever pending Irish election.
A little history. Ireland has two main parties, Fianna Fáil (FF) and Fine Gael (FG). There is also a strong Labour Party. To summarize - and I'm dumbing it down a little to be concise - either FF wins on it's own, or FG and Labour wins with a coalition government. FF and FG have a very similar yet very different history. They were once a single party split by the idea of having the English monarch in Ireland. For this reason, neither party was really "left" or "right" of the other, but the co-operation with Labour over time has pulled FG to the left while FF has been allowed to drift to the right.
Now recent history. FF has been hurt by the recession, and it's perceived mismanagement of the situation. They have dropped like a rock in the polls, coming in third place by some counts. I've decided to run a poll average plus some trend and baselines and see if I can come up with a seat projection for the coming election. This is what I have.
FG - 57 (Gov)
FF - 43
Lab - 38 (Gov)
SC - 14
Grn - 8
Ind - 5
CC - 1
While there will errors in this count, of course, but it is a good rough guide as to what may happen when the election is called; of course, that could be 2012.
Sorry, no extra data today!