Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Euro Election Reflections 3

Coming as I do from that hot bed of political oddity known as North Down I'm sure that one group of the strange North Down political landscape will be rejoicing.

From the days of Jim Kilfedder and his Ulster Popular Unionist Party (basically him), through Robert McCartney United Kingdom Unionist Party (again basically him though it did elect others to the first assembly) to now being the sole Ulster Unionist MP with Lady Sylvia Herman North Down has often stood in the face of the traditional Unionist parties of the province. Indeed the largest party on the council has at times been the Better Bangor Campaign and the NI Conservative Party. Yeah that in most parts of the UK isn't an oddity but the Conservatives have been the biggest party on North Down Council in the past.

Therefore I've no doubt that Laurence Kennedy (who actually came second to Kilfedder in the 1992 GE) and the rest of the North Down Branch will be rejoicing at the first Conservative (OK Ulster Conservatives and Unionists - New Force) elected to Parliamentary office since 1972 in Northern Ireland in Jim Nicolson.

Of course whether it is a surge in Ulster Unionist support following its merger with the Conservatives that brought about this hardly surprising election to one of Northern Ireland's three European seats ahead of the DUP remains to be seen. But estimates are putting the DUP at losing 5 of its Westminster seats on this weeks performance who to is the issue with Traditional Unionist Voice also polling well on first preferences.

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