With votes from most of the Irish constituencies in, Mary McAleese of the Fianna Fail party will be the next president of Ireland.
McAleese was the first choice of 45% of the voters, while her closest competitor Mary Banotti trailed with about 30% of the vote. Banotti conceded defeat this afternoon. McAleese campaigned for reconciliation between Catholics and Protestants.
This year’s race was unusual for Ireland because four women and only one man ran for the presidency. Although a neon sign on Ireland’s City Hall reads “It’d be much better for the world to be governed by the women in it,” from James Joyce’s “Ulysses,” women make up less than one-eighth of the lower Parliament, take home 61.3% of men’s pay, and are still underrepresented in management positions.