Government wins two Seanad by elections

The government has won two by-elections to the Seanad this afternoon.

Fianna Fáil's Gerry Horkan won a place on the industrial and commercial panel beating out competition from Independent Billy Lawless and Green Party chair Hazel Chu who ran as an Independent.

Earlier Fine Gael's Maria Byrne won election to the agricultural panel.

It means the government won both elections in the secret ballot of Oireachtas members.

Both Horkan and Byrne are former Senators who have now won back a place in the upper house.