Saturday, 20 March 2010

The runners and riders - UCUNF

Eight more candidates selected this morning.

Rodney McCune in East Antrim.
Lesley McAuley in East Londonderry.
Paula Bradshaw South belfast
Foyle is David Harding
Irwin Armstrong takes North Antrim.
Ian Parsley North Down.
Tom Elliott Fermanagh South Tyrone

So only the tricky South Antrim decision remains elusive. It could well produce a bit of a surprise.


Anonymous said...

Is Irwin Armstrong a Conservative?

Anonymous said...

The overall line up is pretty good (I don't know Irwin however so I can't comment on him).

I wonder when the South Antrim one will be declared. It's crucial as that is an eminently winnable seat with the right candidate.

Chekov said...


Anonymous said...

A quick google on Irwin Armstrong Ballymena brings up a successful entrepreneur. So that looks quite promising. Wonder if he is UUP or Conservative?

Chekov said...

He's a Tory.

Garza said...

Is it just me or is North Belfast, F&ST, South Antrim yet to be finalised?

Chekov said...

Sorry Garza. I'd omitted FST. North Belfast is Cobain. It was in first nine.

Chekov said...

Sorry Garza. I'd omitted FST. North Belfast is Cobain. It was in first nine.

O'Neill said...

Congratulations to the candidates!

And to Chekov for trumping both the MSM and Slugger!

Orangeman said...

Ah yes, South Antrim. Looks like being the place that UCUNF completely ballses up.

As I understand UCUNF, the Joint Committee only approves a candidate once there is a choice of names between a UUP nominee and a Tory nominee. I am not aware of any Tory being nominated thus far.

I imagine the delay in what ought to be a crucial marginal is over Watson's views on civil partnerships not being quite Notting Hill-esque. (The same could have been said for Burnside, Forsythe and Molyneaux etc.) If he is thus overlooked in favour of some Tory plucked from thin air, then I suspect he will go public with his anger about being shafted on account of his Christian views. Just what the UUP needs, eh.

(On a related point, anyone who wants to win any marginal anywhere needs to have been selected and doing the spadework for months in advance.)

To be watched with interest.

Anonymous said...

Thought Duncan Crossey would have got the nod in East Londonderry with Robin Swann prevailing in North Antrim. Otherwise, despite the bloodshed and time taken, it is as expected a good list.

South Antrim candidacy perhaps depends on who is the least controversial for Conservative HQ in London - alleged homophobe or alleged sexual discrimination.

Without a ‘star’ name there was no alternative but to endorse the UUP nominees for South Belfast and Fermanagh & South Tyrone. Whether it is enough for the DUP not to run - only time will tell.

Having stood only three candidates at the last general election - none of whom were successful or re-nominated - it is hard for the Conservatives to argue for more than three again.

Overall today should show the Conservatives that ‘normalising’ Northern Ireland politics is a long-term project, with more at stake than unionist head counting.

Anonymous said...

Irwin is the only Conservative in the line-up to date. Parsley is nominally Conservative but has made his loathing of the local Conservative Party structure very public. The line-up confirms that UCUNF is merely a repainting of the UUP. Very depressing. This is an opportunity lost. Same old dull UUPers - and even the younger ones have the same old tired ideas. Looks like the entire Conservative UUP project is set to crash and burn. Highly unlikely that any of these people will be elected.

Chekov said...

Orangeman - I don't think a Conservative is likely for S Antrim.

Ivor Whitten said...

I'm available. ;)

Anonymous said...

So two Tories, one in a no-hoper seat.

Cameron must be delighted!

peteram79 said...

Any hints on the South Antrim surprise, Chekov?

You say not a Conservative, which punches a hole in my initial theory when I saw the first 17. On seeing Duncan Crossey omitted, I'd thought he might be in line for a parachute landing in SA. Close links with Conservative central office, a local background and, if what I recall someone telling me is correct, the elusive UCUNF Catholic (obviously I could be totally wrong on that), it seemed that he might have been considered "too good to waste" on East Londonderry

Anonymous said...

Interesting that poster said and even the younger ones have the same old tired ideas. Looks like the entire Conservative UUP project is set to crash and burn. .

East Londonderry, South Belfast, West Belfast, East Belfast and Strangford are just 5 seats off the top of my head that look nothing like the comment above.

Is this a case of sour grapes that the UUP candidates look more like Conservative candidates than the Conservative Candidates?

It is great to see many fresh faces, with fresh ideas and no political baggage, getting a chance to enter the scene.

Many of these candidates will make excellent MLA's if they are not successful this time - what do the other parties have to offer in the way of fresh faces, fresh ideas and no political baggage?