Kilkenny has been announced recently as being just above the national average in terms of eligibility to vote in the upcomming NUI Seanad Elections.
Yet it is Thomastown, one of Kilkenny’s prettiest and most popular towns, that has been announced as having almost twice the national average on a record 3.92%.
Nationally 2.2% of the population can vote in the NUI Seanad Election as opposed to almost 75% of the population in the recent general election. This exclusive electorate includes outgoing Senators, incoming TDs, members of city and county councils. The NUI Constituency has three seats elected by graduates of NUI Colleges (UCD, UCC, NUIG and NUI Maynooth). Trinity College also elects three seats on its own.
Kilkenny City has ranked 9th in those with the highest Seanad voting populations with 2.34%, while the wider Kilkenny County is falling below at 1.4%.
This means Thomastown has a denser population of NUI graduates than indeed many cities and counties throughout Ireland (such as Waterford City on 0.9% or Tipperary on 1.9%).
Other high ranking Kilkenny towns on the list include Callan on 3.5% and Ballyragget on 2.67%.
NUI Seanad Candidate Peter Mooney has spoken out about the unfair and exclusive nature of these NUI Seanad elections, and has expressed his interest in opening the Seanad Election process up to all the electorate to be held on the same day as the general election.