Robin Who? to step down as leader of Ulster Unionists - implications?



Se0samh

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midlander12

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I didn't know who the leader of the UUP was - the last one I can remember was some guy called Nesbitt (used to read the news back in the day?).

Implications - none, I'd imagine, except Mrs Swann if there is one will presumably be seeing a little more of her husband.
 

McSlaggart

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raetsel

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This is the way the "UUP ends
Not with a bang but a whimper.
When his predecessor Terence O'Neill resigned just over 50 years ago in April 1969 it was major news., not least in the spectacular way it was brought about by Ian Paisley who nearly unseated him in his Bannside constituency.
It has been all downhill since then.
In the 1969 election which cost O'Neill the leadership, the entire unionist vote was 376,544, compared to the entire non-unionist vote which came to 163,312 on a 71.9% turnout.
In the 2017 Assembly election the respective FP figures were 363,736 for all unionists compared with 428,817 for non-unionists on a 64.8% turnout.
It is about ot get worse for unionism. An estimated two thirds of the population over 65 are unionists and they represent around 24% of the electorate and very probably even more of the actual turnout. At the other end of the scale a small majority of young voters from non-unionist backgrounds are due to come on to the register in the next two decades.
 

Glaucon

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The UUP has become irrelevant. Liberals can go to Alliance. The hardcore have the DUP or the TUV. It's time for the UUP to disappear.
 

Dame_Enda

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Alliance are replacing the UUP as a home for more moderate Unionists.
 

raetsel

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Alliance are replacing the UUP as a home for more moderate Unionists.
That's a misunderstanding. Alliance's growth in the last decade or so is mainly due to moderate nationalists.
PR transfers prove it. In the 2014 Euro election for instance, which is the last time a comprehensive analysis for NI, over 70% of Alliance transfers went to the SDLP.
 

McSlaggart

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That's a misunderstanding. Alliance's growth in the last decade or so is mainly due to moderate nationalists.
PR transfers prove it. In the 2014 Euro election for instance, which is the last time a comprehensive analysis for NI, over 70% of Alliance transfers went to the SDLP.

This would need to be compared on a seat by seat basis and by election. A republican living in East Belfast would vote Alliance if they thought they could get a unionist out.
 

raetsel

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This would need to be compared on a seat by seat basis and by election. A republican living in East Belfast would vote Alliance if they thought they could get a unionist out.
But then they are not Alliance voters. They are Sinn Fein supporters voting tactically. In the election I cited most of the distributed votes were first preference Alliance votes.
What I'm saying is that the most Alliance voters lean soft nationalist, by the way, not that they are SDLP or SF.
 

devonish

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But then they are not Alliance voters. They are Sinn Fein supporters voting tactically. In the election I cited most of the distributed votes were first preference Alliance votes.
What I'm saying is that the most Alliance voters lean soft nationalist, by the way, not that they are SDLP or SF.
That was quite a surprise to me when you first pointed it out. On the issue of the relevance of the UUP, there are strong parallels with the SDLP, they have a core vote who would baulk at the idea of voting DUP so I don't see a merger on the horizon, just a case of a once dominant party having to adjust to the reality of changing times. Doug Beattie seems like the most sensible leader in waiting.
 

raetsel

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That was quite a surprise to me when you first pointed it out. On the issue of the relevance of the UUP, there are strong parallels with the SDLP, they have a core vote who would baulk at the idea of voting DUP so I don't see a merger on the horizon, just a case of a once dominant party having to adjust to the reality of changing times. Doug Beattie seems like the most sensible leader in waiting.
The problem is that in both cases their support seems to be collectively older.
Younger moderate voters are gravitating towards Alliance.
Doug Beattie is the obvious choice. Apart from Steve Aiken he is the only MLA with much public profile.
There is one glimmer of light, if you can call it that, for the UUP in their quest to win back support from the DUP, and that is the potential for a damaging triple-whammy coming imminently from the introduction of abortion by default, a disastrous hard Brexit and an excoriating RHI Inquiry report. As the Troubles recede into distant memory those issues will become more relevant than being seen to be tough with Sinn Fein. The DUP are particularly vulnerable on abortion.
Ian Paisley senior would have been far too wily to have walked open-eyed into that.
 

Mickeymac

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That was quite a surprise to me when you first pointed it out. On the issue of the relevance of the UUP, there are strong parallels with the SDLP, they have a core vote who would baulk at the idea of voting DUP so I don't see a merger on the horizon, just a case of a once dominant party having to adjust to the reality of changing times. Doug Beattie seems like the most sensible leader in waiting.

Your last sentence is quite hilarious DEV, how can he be the most sensible leader considering the fact he has publicly declared his opposition to an Irish Language Act?

Forgive me if I got it wrong and you were simply taking the pi$$ with a sick joke. :ROFLMAO:

Such an AH.
 

Barroso

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The problem is that in both cases their support seems to be collectively older.
Younger moderate voters are gravitating towards Alliance.
Doug Beattie is the obvious choice. Apart from Steve Aiken he is the only MLA with much public profile.
There is one glimmer of light, if you can call it that, for the UUP in their quest to win back support from the DUP, and that is the potential for a damaging triple-whammy coming imminently from the introduction of abortion by default, a disastrous hard Brexit and an excoriating RHI Inquiry report. As the Troubles recede into distant memory those issues will become more relevant than being seen to be tough with Sinn Fein. The DUP are particularly vulnerable on abortion.
I wonder if this is intentional. Arlene is known to be very hard anti-nat, but is not reckoned to be so rightwing on social issues. Was it at conference that she had the DUP's first lesbian councillor sitting immediately to her right? (edit - 3 to her right)200820249-9270b779-8269-4a50-819a-fecd02118b7f.jpg
I'd view abortion by default as a favour done by Johnson to the DUP. It takes it out of the equation without the DUP having to vote on it. The party no longer has to spend time debating the issue, and will not tear itself apart as a result. They can pass a motion deploring this action by Westminister and move on.

Now they can focus entirely on the real issue: how to keep the taigs down.
 
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