Meanwhile, businessman Sean Gallagher has formally launched his campaign

President Michael D Higgins has a substantial lead over his fellow candidates in the Presidential campaign, according to a new poll.

The Paddy Power/ Red C survey of a thousand people was conducted between October 3rd and 10th.

It indicates that President Higgins is on 70% support.

That’s a 56 point lead on his nearest rival Sean Gallagher, who is on 14%.

The poll shows Senator Joan Freeman on 6% and businessman Gavin Duffy on 4%.

Sinn Féin's Liadh Ní Riada is also on 5%, while Peter Casey is on 1%.

Earlier today, Sean Gallagher officially launched his campaign.

Responding to the polls so far, he observed: "A journalist made the comment that something unprecedented would have to happen, potentially, in this election given her views of the poll.

"I said I'm living proof that unprecedented things happen during elections."