Election 2020 fallout: when the centre cannot hold

The narrative of the Sinn Féin surge suggests that politics in Ireland is becoming more polarised like in the US and Britain, but the reality is far more complex

“Class has always been a factor in political identity, of course, but in recent years it has been weaponised.” Picture: Getty

The tallyman watching the opening of box 427 from the polling station in Cherry Orchard in Dublin’s Ballyfermot had an easier job than most. There were two votes for the Green candidate, three votes for Fine Gael, three for Fianna Fáil, 10 for independents, 18 for People Before Profit, and 200 for Aengus Ó Snodaigh. The Sinn Féin's candidate and now returning TD won almost nine in every ten votes.

In the small area around ...