Over 55,000 votes were spoiled in the European elections. In Ireland South there were 24,759 spoiled votes, in Midlands North West 20,754 votes were deemed invalid, while the corresponding figure for Dublin was 9,843.

That gives an overall total of 55,356 spoiled votes, which was 3% of the 1.8m total votes cast.

While many of these votes may have been spoiled by choice, and some were left blank by people who wanted to vote in the local elections but not the European elections, many were spoiled by mistake. The length of the ballot was an issue for voters, and there have already been calls to raise the very low bar for candidates in the European elections. It only requires €1,800 and either a registered party nomination or 60 signatures to get on the ballot paper.


With 73 candidates across the three constituencies, ballot papers were three quarters of a metre long, leading to confusion. The Electoral Commission has welcomed the fact that it’s a 29% improvement on five years ago, when 75,000 votes were spoiled in the 2019 European elections, but much work needs to be done.