List of Irish by-elections

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This is a list of all by-elections (Irish: fothoghcháin) to Dáil Éireann, the lower house of the Irish parliament (Oireachtas) since 1923. By-elections in Ireland occur to fill vacant seats which can be caused by the death, resignation or expulsion of a sitting Teachta Dála (Member of Parliament).

There have been 130 by-elections since 1923, to fill 132 vacancies. 92 of these were caused by the death of a sitting Teachta Dála (TD). There have been six by-elections during the lifetime of the 31st Dáil. There were no by-elections during the 1st,[n 1] 2nd,[n 1] 3rd, 7th, 9th, 11th, 22nd, 25th and 26th Dála. The longest period without a by-election was almost 10 years between 1984 and 1994. The largest number of by-elections on one day was on 11 March 1925, when seven constituencies filled nine vacancies caused by the National Party's split from Cumann na nGaedheal. Those seven by-elections included two which filled two vacancies, via the single transferable vote. All the other by-elections have used its single-winner analogue, the alternative vote.

There have been 22 TDs who were first elected at a by-election and never subsequently re-elected at a general election. The only person twice elected at by-elections was Thomas Hennessy.


Winner Party Constituency Date Dáil Outgoing Party Reason for vacancy

Kennedy, HughHugh Kennedy[n 2] CnaG Dublin South 27 October 1923 4th Dáil Hayes, MichaelMichael Hayes CnaG Hayes was elected in two constituencies and opted to represent the NUI[1]
Patrick McGilligan CnaG NUI 3 November 1923 4th Dáil MacNeill, EoinEoin MacNeill CnaG MacNeill was elected in two constituencies and opted to represent Clare.[2]
James O'Mara[n 2] CnaG Dublin South 12 March 1924 4th Dáil Cosgrave, PhilipPhilip Cosgrave CnaG Death of Philip Cosgrave
Batt O'Connor CnaG Dublin County 19 March 1924 4th Dáil Derham, MichaelMichael Derham CnaG Death of Michael Derham
Richard O'Connell CnaG Limerick 28 May 1924 4th Dáil Hayes, RichardRichard Hayes CnaG Resignation of Richard Hayes
Noonan, MichaelMichael Noonan[n 2] CnaG Cork East 18 November 1924 4th Dáil Thomas O'Mahony CnaG Death of Thomas O'Mahony
Lemass, SeánSeán Lemass Rep Dublin South 18 November 1924 4th Dáil Kennedy, HughHugh Kennedy CnaG Appointment of Hugh Kennedy as Chief Justice
Madden, JohnJohn Madden Rep Mayo North 18 November 1924 4th Dáil Coyle, HenryHenry Coyle CnaG Disqualification of Henry Coyle
Egan, MichaelMichael Egan CnaG Cork Borough 19 November 1924 4th Dáil Alfred O'Rahilly CnaG Resignation of Alfred O'Rahilly
Denis McCullough[n 2] CnaG Donegal 20 November 1924 4th Dáil Ward, Peter J.Peter J. Ward CnaG Resignation of Peter J. Ward
Bolger, ThomasThomas Bolger[n 2] CnaG Carlow–Kilkenny 11 March 1925 4th Dáil Gibbons, SeánSeán Gibbons CnaG Resignation of Seán Gibbons
John Joe O'Reilly CnaG Cavan 11 March 1925 4th Dáil Milroy, SeánSeán Milroy CnaG Resignation of Seán Milroy
Leonard, PatrickPatrick Leonard CnaG Dublin North[n 3] 11 March 1925 4th Dáil Cahill, FrancisFrancis Cahill CnaG Resignation of Francis Cahill on 30 October 1924
Traynor, OscarOscar Traynor Rep Dublin North[n 3] 11 March 1925 4th Dáil Seán McGarry CnaG Resignation of Seán McGarry on 30 October 1924
Hennessy, ThomasThomas Hennessy CnaG Dublin South 11 March 1925 4th Dáil Daniel McCarthy CnaG Resignation of Daniel McCarthy
Holt, SamuelSamuel Holt Rep Leitrim–Sligo[n 3] 11 March 1925 4th Dáil Carter, ThomasThomas Carter CnaG Resignation of Thomas Carter on 30 October 1924
Roddy, MartinMartin Roddy CnaG Leitrim–Sligo[n 3] 11 March 1925 4th Dáil Alexander McCabe CnaG Resignation of Alexander McCabe
Tierney, MichaelMichael Tierney CnaG Mayo North 11 March 1925 4th Dáil Macgrath, JosephJoseph McGrath CnaG Resignation of Joseph McGrath on 29 October 1924
Conlon, MartinMartin Conlon CnaG Roscommon 11 March 1925 4th Dáil Finlay, HenryHenry Finlay CnaG Resignation of Henry Finlay
Norton, WilliamWilliam Norton Lab Dublin County 18 February 1926 4th Dáil Figgis, DarrellDarrell Figgis Ind Death of Darrell Figgis
Dwyer, JamesJames Dwyer CnaG Leix–Offaly 18 February 1926 4th Dáil Seán McGuinness Rep Disqualification of Seán McGuinness

Gearóid O'Sullivan CnaG Dublin County 24 August 1927 5th Dáil Kevin O'Higgins CnaG Assassination of Kevin O'Higgins
Hennessy, ThomasThomas Hennessy CnaG Dublin South 24 August 1927 5th Dáil Markievicz, ConstanceConstance Markievicz FF Death of Constance Markievicz

Gorey, DenisDenis Gorey CnaG Carlow–Kilkenny 3 November 1927 6th Dáil Cosgrave, W. T.W. T. Cosgrave CnaG Cosgrave was elected in two constituencies and opted to represent Cork Borough[3]
Rice, VincentVincent Rice CnaG Dublin North 3 April 1928 6th Dáil Larkin, JamesJames Larkin IWL Disqualification of James Larkin due to bankruptcy
Thomas F. O'Higgins CnaG Dublin North 14 March 1929 6th Dáil Byrne, AlfieAlfie Byrne Ind Election of Alfie Byrne to Seanad Éireann
Seán Mac Eoin CnaG Leitrim–Sligo 7 June 1929 6th Dáil Holt, SamuelSamuel Holt FF Death of Samuel Holt
Geoghegan, JamesJames Geoghegan FF Longford–Westmeath 13 June 1930 6th Dáil Killane, JamesJames Killane FF Death of James Killane
Finlay, ThomasThomas Finlay CnaG Dublin County 9 December 1930 6th Dáil Cooper, BryanBryan Cooper CnaG Death of Bryan Cooper
Harris, ThomasThomas Harris FF Kildare 29 June 1931 6th Dáil Colohan, HughHugh Colohan Lab Death of Hugh Colohan

Rowlette, RobertRobert Rowlette[n 2] Ind University of Dublin 13 October 1933 8th Dáil Craig, JamesJames Craig Ind Death of James Craig
Lavery, CecilCecil Lavery FG Dublin County 17 June 1935 8th Dáil Batt O'Connor FG Death of Batt O'Connor
Corbett, EamonEamon Corbett FF Galway 19 June 1935 8th Dáil Martin McDonogh FG Death of Martin McDonogh
Neilan, MartinMartin Neilan[n 2] FF Galway 13 August 1936 8th Dáil Hogan, PatrickPatrick Hogan FG Death of Patrick Hogan
Allen, DenisDenis Allen FF Wexford 17 August 1936 8th Dáil Esmonde, OsmondOsmond Esmonde FG Death of Osmond Esmonde

Maccann, JohnJohn McCann FF Dublin South 6 June 1939 10th Dáil Beckett, JamesJames Beckett FG Death of James Beckett
Keane, John J.John J. Keane[n 2] FF Galway West 30 May 1940 10th Dáil Tubridy, SeánSeán Tubridy FF Death of Seán Tubridy

Donal O'Donoghue[n 2] FF Kerry South 10 November 1944 12th Dáil Lynch, FionánFionán Lynch FG Appointment of Fionán Lynch as a Judge
Shanahan, PatrickPatrick Shanahan[n 2] FF Clare 4 December 1945 12th Dáil Burke, PatrickPatrick Burke FG Death of Patrick Burke
de Valera, VivionVivion de Valera FF Dublin North-West 4 December 1945 12th Dáil Seán T. O'Kelly FF Election of Seán T. O'Kelly as President
Crowley, HonorHonor Crowley FF Kerry South 4 December 1945 12th Dáil Crowley, FrederickFrederick Crowley FF Death of Frederick Crowley
Commons, BernardBernard Commons CnaT Mayo South 4 December 1945 12th Dáil Clery, MicheálMicheál Clery FF Appointment of Micheál Clery as County Registrar of Dublin
Corish, BrendanBrendan Corish Lab Wexford 4 December 1945 12th Dáil Corish, RichardRichard Corish Lab Death of Richard Corish
Macgrath, PatrickPatrick McGrath FF Cork Borough 14 June 1946 12th Dáil Dwyer, WilliamWilliam Dwyer Ind Resignation of William Dwyer
Seán MacBride CnaP Dublin County 29 October 1947 12th Dáil Fogarty, PatrickPatrick Fogarty FF Death of Patrick Fogarty
Kinane, PatrickPatrick Kinane CnaP Tipperary 29 October 1947 12th Dáil William O'Donnell CnaT Death of William O'Donnell
Ormonde, JohnJohn Ormonde FF Waterford 29 October 1947 12th Dáil Morrissey, MichaelMichael Morrissey FF Death of Michael Morrissey

Blaney, NeilNeil Blaney FF Donegal East 7 December 1948 13th Dáil Blaney, NealNeal Blaney FF Death of Neal Blaney
Murphy, William J.William J. Murphy[n 2] Lab Cork West 15 June 1949 13th Dáil Murphy, Timothy J.Timothy J. Murphy Lab Death of Timothy J. Murphy
Odonnell, PatrickPatrick O'Donnell FG Donegal West 16 November 1949 13th Dáil Brady, BrianBrian Brady FF Death of Brian Brady

Carew, JohnJohn Carew FG Limerick East 26 June 1952 14th Dáil Bourke, DanielDaniel Bourke FF Death of Daniel Bourke
Calleary, PhelimPhelim Calleary FF Mayo North 26 June 1952 14th Dáil Ruttledge, P. J.P. J. Ruttledge FF Death of P. J. Ruttledge
Kenneally, WilliamWilliam Kenneally FF Waterford 26 June 1952 14th Dáil Redmond, BridgetBridget Redmond FG Death of Bridget Redmond
Byrne, ThomasThomas Byrne Ind Dublin North-West 12 November 1952 14th Dáil Byrne, Alfred P.Alfred P. Byrne Ind Death of Alfred P. Byrne
Barry, RichardRichard Barry FG Cork East 18 June 1953 14th Dáil Keane, SeánSeán Keane Lab Death of Seán Keane
Deering, MarkMark Deering FG Wicklow 18 June 1953 14th Dáil Brennan, ThomasThomas Brennan FF Death of Thomas Brennan
Lahiffe, RobertRobert Lahiffe FF Galway South 21 August 1953 14th Dáil Fahy, FrankFrank Fahy FF Death of Frank Fahy
Barrett, StephenStephen Barrett FG Cork Borough 3 March 1954 14th Dáil Thomas F. O'Higgins FG Death of Thomas F. O'Higgins
Coburn, GeorgeGeorge Coburn FG Louth 3 March 1954 14th Dáil Coburn, JamesJames Coburn FG Death of James Coburn

Colbert, MichaelMichael Colbert FF Limerick West 13 December 1955 15th Dáil Madden, DavidDavid Madden FG Death of David Madden
Kathleen O'Connor[n 2] CnaP Kerry North 29 February 1956 15th Dáil Connor, JohnnyJohnny Connor CnaP Death of Johnny Connor
Byrne, PatrickPatrick Byrne Ind Dublin North-East 30 April 1956 15th Dáil Byrne, AlfieAlfie Byrne Ind Death of Alfie Byrne
Egan, KieranKieran Egan FF Leix–Offaly 30 April 1956 15th Dáil Davin, WilliamWilliam Davin Lab Death of William Davin
Galvin, JohnJohn Galvin FF Cork Borough 2 August 1956 15th Dáil Macgrath, PatrickPatrick McGrath FF Death of Patrick McGrath
Medlar, MartinMartin Medlar FF Carlow–Kilkenny 14 November 1956 15th Dáil Walsh, ThomasThomas Walsh FF Death of Thomas Walsh
Lemass, Jnr, NoelNoel Lemass, Jnr FF Dublin South-West 14 November 1956 15th Dáil Doyle, PeadarPeadar Doyle FG Death of Peadar Doyle

Sherwin, FrankFrank Sherwin Ind Dublin North-Central 14 November 1957 16th Dáil Gallagher, ColmColm Gallagher FF Death of Colm Gallagher
Millar, AnthonyAnthony Millar FF Galway South 30 May 1958 16th Dáil Beegan, PatrickPatrick Beegan FF Death of Patrick Beegan
Cummins, PatrickPatrick Cummins FF Dublin South-Central 25 June 1958 16th Dáil Murphy, JackJack Murphy Ind Resignation of Jack Murphy
Oceallaigh, SeanSeán Ó Ceallaigh FF Clare 22 July 1959 16th Dáil de Valera, ÉamonÉamon de Valera FF Election of Éamon de Valera as President
Ryan, RichieRichie Ryan FG Dublin South-West 22 July 1959 16th Dáil Butler, BernardBernard Butler FF Death of Bernard Butler
Johnston, HenryHenry Johnston[n 2] FF Meath 22 July 1959 16th Dáil Griffin, JamesJames Griffin FF Death of James Griffin
Teehan, PatrickPatrick Teehan[n 2] FF Carlow–Kilkenny 23 June 1960 16th Dáil Hughes, JosephJoseph Hughes FG Death of Joseph Hughes
Joseph McLoughlin FG Sligo–Leitrim 1 March 1961 16th Dáil Flynn, StephenStephen Flynn FF Death of Stephen Flynn

Belton, PaddyPaddy Belton FG Dublin North-East 30 May 1963 17th Dáil Belton, JackJack Belton FG Death of Jack Belton
Galvin, SheilaSheila Galvin[n 2] FF Cork Borough 19 February 1964 17th Dáil Galvin, JohnJohn Galvin FF Death of John Galvin
Boylan, TerenceTerence Boylan FF Kildare 19 February 1964 17th Dáil Norton, WilliamWilliam Norton Lab Death of William Norton
Burke, JoanJoan Burke FG Roscommon 8 July 1964 17th Dáil Burke, JamesJames Burke FG Death of James Burke
Donnellan, JohnJohn Donnellan FG Galway East 3 December 1964 17th Dáil Donnellan, MichaelMichael Donnellan CnaT Death of Michael Donnellan
Desmond, EileenEileen Desmond Lab Cork Mid 10 March 1965 17th Dáil Desmond, DanDan Desmond Lab Death of Dan Desmond

Oleary, JohnJohn O'Leary FF Kerry South 7 December 1966 18th Dáil Crowley, HonorHonor Crowley FF Death of Honor Crowley
Browne, FadFad Browne FF Waterford 7 December 1966 18th Dáil Lynch, ThaddeusThaddeus Lynch FG Death of Thaddeus Lynch
French, SeánSeán French FF Cork Borough 9 November 1967 18th Dáil Seán Casey Lab Death of Seán Casey
Collins, GerryGerry Collins FF Limerick West 9 November 1967 18th Dáil Collins, JamesJames Collins FF Death of James Collins
Barrett, SylvesterSylvester Barrett FF Clare 14 March 1968 18th Dáil Murphy, WilliamWilliam Murphy FG Death of William Murphy
Timmins, GodfreyGodfrey Timmins FG Wicklow 14 March 1968 18th Dáil Everett, JamesJames Everett Lab Death of James Everett
Desmond O'Malley FF Limerick East 22 May 1968 18th Dáil Donogh O'Malley FF Death of Donogh O'Malley

Sherwin, SeánSeán Sherwin[n 2] FF Dublin South-West 4 March 1970 19th Dáil Dunne, SeánSeán Dunne Lab Death of Seán Dunne
Malone, PatrickPatrick Malone FG Kildare 14 April 1970 19th Dáil Sweetman, GerardGerard Sweetman FG Death of Gerard Sweetman
Cooney, PatrickPatrick Cooney FG Longford–Westmeath 14 April 1970 19th Dáil Lenihan, PatrickPatrick Lenihan FF Death of Patrick Lenihan
Delap, PatrickPatrick Delap[n 2] FF Donegal–Leitrim 2 December 1970 19th Dáil Odonnell, PatrickPatrick O'Donnell FG Death of Patrick O'Donnell
Larry McMahon FG Dublin County South 2 December 1970 19th Dáil Boland, KevinKevin Boland FF Resignation of Kevin Boland
Fitzgerald, GeneGene Fitzgerald FF Cork Mid 2 August 1972 19th Dáil Forde, PaddyPaddy Forde FF Death of Paddy Forde

Toal, BrendanBrendan Toal[n 2] FG Monaghan 27 November 1973 20th Dáil Childers, Erskine H.Erskine H. Childers FF Election of Erskine H. Childers as President
Brosnan, SeánSeán Brosnan FF Cork North-East 13 November 1974 20th Dáil Ahern, LiamLiam Ahern FF Death of Liam Ahern
Kitt, Michael P.Michael P. Kitt FF Galway North-East 4 March 1975 20th Dáil Kitt, Michael F.Michael F. Kitt FF Death of Michael F. Kitt
Geoghegan-Quinn, MáireMáire Geoghegan-Quinn FF Galway West 4 March 1975 20th Dáil Geoghegan, JohnnyJohnny Geoghegan FF Death of Johnny Geoghegan
Kenny, EndaEnda Kenny FG Mayo West 12 November 1975 20th Dáil Kenny, HenryHenry Kenny FG Death of Henry Kenny
Keaveney, PaddyPaddy Keaveney[n 2] IFF Donegal North-East 10 June 1976 20th Dáil Cunningham, LiamLiam Cunningham FF Death of Liam Cunningham
Halligan, BrendanBrendan Halligan[n 2] Lab Dublin South-West 10 June 1976 20th Dáil Lemass, Jnr, NoelNoel Lemass, Jnr FF Death of Noel Lemass, Jnr

Burke, LiamLiam Burke FG Cork City 7 November 1979 21st Dáil Kerrigan, PatrickPatrick Kerrigan Lab Death of Patrick Kerrigan
Barry, MyraMyra Barry FG Cork North-East 7 November 1979 21st Dáil Brosnan, SeánSeán Brosnan FF Death of Seán Brosnan
Coughlan, ClementClement Coughlan FF Donegal 6 November 1980 21st Dáil Brennan, JosephJoseph Brennan FF Death of Joseph Brennan

Skelly, LiamLiam Skelly FG Dublin West 25 May 1982 23rd Dáil Burke, RichardRichard Burke FG Resignation of Burke on appointment as EU Commissioner
Treacy, NoelNoel Treacy FF Galway East 20 July 1982 23rd Dáil Callanan, JohnnyJohnny Callanan FF Death of Johnny Callanan

Coughlan, CathalCathal Coughlan[n 2] FF Donegal South-West 13 May 1983 24th Dáil Coughlan, ClementClement Coughlan FF Death of Clement Coughlan
Leonard, TomTom Leonard FF Dublin Central 23 November 1983 24th Dáil Colley, GeorgeGeorge Colley FF Death of George Colley
Cowen, BrianBrian Cowen FF Laois–Offaly 14 June 1984 24th Dáil Cowen, BernardBernard Cowen FF Death of Bernard Cowen

Byrne, EricEric Byrne DL Dublin South-Central 9 June 1994 27th Dáil Oconnell, JohnJohn O'Connell FF Resignation of John O'Connell
Ring, MichaelMichael Ring FG Mayo West 9 June 1994 27th Dáil Flynn, PádraigPádraig Flynn FF Resignation of Pádraig Flynn on appointment as EU Commissioner
Lynch, KathleenKathleen Lynch DL Cork North-Central 10 November 1994 27th Dáil Osullivan, GerryGerry O'Sullivan Lab Death of Gerry O'Sullivan
Coveney, HughHugh Coveney FG Cork South-Central 10 November 1994 27th Dáil Cox, PatPat Cox PD Resignation of Pat Cox after election as MEP
Fox, MildredMildred Fox Ind Wicklow 29 June 1995 27th Dáil Fox, JohnnyJohnny Fox Ind Death of Johnny Fox
Keaveney, CeciliaCecilia Keaveney FF Donegal North-East 2 April 1996 27th Dáil Blaney, NeilNeil Blaney IFF Death of Neil Blaney
Lenihan, BrianBrian Lenihan, Jnr FF Dublin West 2 April 1996 27th Dáil Lenihan, BrianBrian Lenihan, Snr FF Death of Brian Lenihan, Snr

Osullivan, JanJan O'Sullivan Lab Limerick East 11 March 1998 28th Dáil Kemmy, JimJim Kemmy Lab Death of Jim Kemmy
Ryan, SeánSeán Ryan Lab Dublin North 11 March 1998 28th Dáil Burke, RayRay Burke FF Resignation of Ray Burke
Coveney, SimonSimon Coveney FG Cork South-Central 23 October 1998 28th Dáil Coveney, HughHugh Coveney FG Death of Hugh Coveney
Upton, MaryMary Upton Lab Dublin South-Central 27 October 1999 28th Dáil Upton, PatPat Upton Lab Death of Pat Upton
Healy, SéamusSéamus Healy Ind Tipperary South 22 June 2000 28th Dáil Ferris, MichaelMichael Ferris Lab Death of Michael Ferris
Hayes, TomTom Hayes FG Tipperary South 30 June 2001 28th Dáil Ahearn, TheresaTheresa Ahearn FG Death of Theresa Ahearn

Murphy, CatherineCatherine Murphy Ind Kildare North 11 March 2005 29th Dáil Maccreevy, CharlieCharlie McCreevy FF Resignation of Charlie McCreevy on appointment as EU Commissioner
Macentee, ShaneShane McEntee FG Meath 11 March 2005 29th Dáil Bruton, JohnJohn Bruton FG Resignation of John Bruton on appointment as EU Ambassador to the United States

Lee, GeorgeGeorge Lee[n 2] FG Dublin South 5 June 2009 30th Dáil Brennan, SéamusSéamus Brennan FF Death of Séamus Brennan
Osullivan, MaureenMaureen O'Sullivan Ind Dublin Central 5 June 2009 30th Dáil Gregory, TonyTony Gregory Ind Death of Tony Gregory
Doherty, PearsePearse Doherty SF Donegal South-West 25 November 2010 30th Dáil Gallagher, Pat the CopePat the Cope Gallagher FF Election of Pat the Cope Gallagher to the European Parliament
Nulty, PatrickPatrick Nulty Lab Dublin West 27 October 2011 31st Dáil Lenihan, BrianBrian Lenihan, Jnr FF Death of Brian Lenihan, Jnr
McEntee, HelenHelen McEntee FG Meath East 27 March 2013 31st Dáil McEntee, ShaneShane McEntee FG Death of Shane McEntee
Ruth Coppinger SP Dublin West 23 May 2014 31st Dáil Nulty, PatrickPatrick Nulty Ind Resignation of Patrick Nulty
McFadden, GabrielleGabrielle McFadden FG Longford–Westmeath 23 May 2014 31st Dáil McFadden, NickyNicky McFadden FG Death of Nicky McFadden
Murphy, PaulPaul Murphy AAA Dublin South-West 10 October 2014 31st Dáil Hayes, BrianBrian Hayes FG Election of Brian Hayes to the European Parliament
Michael Fitzmaurice Ind Roscommon–South Leitrim 10 October 2014 31st Dáil Flanagan, Luke 'Ming'Luke 'Ming' Flanagan Ind Election of Luke 'Ming' Flanagan to the European Parliament
Bobby Aylward FF Carlow–Kilkenny 22 May 2015 31st Dáil Hogan, PhilPhil Hogan FG Resignation of Phil Hogan on appointment as EU Commissioner


  1. 1 2 The First Dáil and Second Dáil were revolutionary parliaments of the self-proclaimed Irish Republic, and as such by-elections were considered both unnecessary and impractical.
  2. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 TDs who were never subsequently re-elected.
  3. 1 2 3 4 A single by-election to fill two vacancies in the same constituency.



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