Survey predicts Sinn Fein to make gains in Donegal

Fianna Fáil looks set to lose 36 seats in next year's general election - according to a prediction survey by the country's independent radio stations.

The survey by Highland Radio and other stations around the country predicts Fine Gael will be the largest party, but that Fianna Fáil may keep Labour in third place.

This national survey predicts the make-up of the 31st Dail in a constituency by constituency basis, using national and local data, including opinion polls.

It predicts 63 seats for Fine Gael, up 12 on their 2007 result.

Fianna Fail would lose 36 seats, down to 43 TD's.

Labour would narrowly miss becoming the second biggest party, winning twenty extra seats, a doubling of their last General Election result.

The Greens will still be around, but just two of their current six will get re-elected.

Sinn Fein, despite their recent surge in the polls, would only go up 2 seats to six, but Dr Adrian Kavanagh, electoral geographer with NUI Maynooth, says they will make gains in the border regions:

[podcast]http://www.highlandradio.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/12/drkav10.mp3[/podcast]

Gerry Adams and Donegal County Councillor Padraig McLaughlin are predicted to be new faces in the Dail, taking seats in the Louth and Donegal North-East constituencys.

But Donegals Deputy Mayor, Councillor McLaughlin, says he won't be getting carried away with todays poll:

[podcast]http://www.highlandradio.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/12/padraw.mp3[/podcast]