Beggs to seek re-election…

EAST Antrim Ulster Unionist MP Roy Beggs is to seek re-election at the next Westminster election. This is the fifth most marginal seat in the UK, according to Chris Thornton – and Sammy Wilson wants it badly (the seat, that is).

  • David Vance

    With his verbal dexterity and rakish charm, surely the young thrusting Beggs will prevail? Let’s face it – when it comes to rubbish dumps, this man is an authority – just what the UUP need.

  • Sam Maguire

    Will Roy Beggs sr be Cecil Walker mark 2 per chance?

  • Fraggle

    why don’t you stand david?

  • davidbrew

    same old same old
    The UUP know they’re going to take a pasting so the wannabes are going to wait until next time. Problem is the next time might be a long time away. Look at North Belfast.

    Latest news in East Londonderry is that the deadline today will only see the reluctant David mcClarty aka “the grey sheep” forced to submit his name , while Billy the Potato is ordered to stand in Mid Ulster and squander some of his assembly cash to push up the province wide vote.

    Mind you the UUP in S Antrim are playing a long game (in a tribute to Jim Molyneaux?) by their recent B T ad giving wannabes until end of “October 2005” to submit names.

    The real question is whether Boggs will do another about turn and oppose the Agreement the week before the election in a desperate attempt to save his skin

  • Belfast Gonzo

    Hey, if the GFA was a great example of creative ambiguity, maybe Mr Beggs is right to hedge his bets!

    Mr Burnside seems to have finally decided what side his GFA bread is buttered on in South Antrim, but will that help his chances this time?

  • David Vance

    Fraggle,

    Too young! And anyway, a Party that exudes the charm of Empey, McGimpsey, Beggs and Trimble surely doesn’t need any more help – as it is beyond any more help!

  • yer_man

    It seems that Roy Beggs luck is finally about to run out. He really has had good fortune in his career.

    Lets face it, one of the biggest mistakes made by the DUP was in pulling out of the race in East Antrim was not to contest this seat in 87. After all, Jim Allister was in the position then that Sammy Wilson is in now. He had been only a handful of votes behind and was a racing cert to take the seat.

    So, look on the bright side Roy. Sammy Wilson is going to take your seat next year, make no mistake about it, but you really have done quite well considering your political career should have ended 18 years previous to that.

    Of course, as we all know, East Antrim is ‘natural Ulster Unionist territory’. Isnt that the stock phrase used at the moment for seats they are destined to lose? – In your best east Antrim accent everyone “Pack yer Beggs!”

  • Michael Shilliday

    “Lets face it, one of the biggest mistakes made by the DUP was in pulling out of the race in East Antrim was not to contest this seat in 87. After all, Jim Allister was in the position then that Sammy Wilson is in now. He had been only a handful of votes behind and was a racing cert to take the seat.”

    so, sammy loses – does he “quit” politics too?

  • davidbrew

    “so, sammy loses – does he “quit” politics too?”-you mean like Mr Boggs did several years ago?

  • Keith M

    “Will Roy Beggs sr be Cecil Walker mark 2 per chance?”. More like Roy Walker I think, i.e. a very unfunny joker.

    Seriously no matter who the UUP ran in East Antrim, I could not see them holding on. The seat will change hands and help consign the UUP to the same dead-end as Faulker’s UPNI.

    If Daphne’s performance on “Hearts & Minds” is anything to go by, then Donaldson doesn’t even need to canvass to hold his seat.

    Timble’s own seat would need tactical Nationalist votes and why would they bother? This leaves South Antrim where Burnside SHOULD hold on, especially if the DUP field McCrea. It’s too early to call South Belfast or North Down as we don’t know the full candidate list.

    A good bet would be whhether the UUP get less seats than the SDLP. Hell it’s even possible they could get less seats than the UKUP!

  • yer_man

    Michael
    “so, sammy loses – does he “quit” politics too?”

    As I recall, Jim Allister didnt leave political life because he failed to beat Beggs in the 83 General Election. He stayed on and worked the Constituency, by all accounts leaving himself in the position where he would have beaten Beggs comfortably in 87. However, he was then denied the opportunity to run against Beggs and after that decided to go off and concentrate on his career.

    Anyway… that wont really matter because Sammy Wilson is going to take the seat quite comfortably.

    Also Michael, good to see that Mr Boggs has started his election campaign early with a nice piece on the front page of the Belfast Telegraph this evening………. you do have to wonder why he’s so keen to cause a massive planning row over his ‘retirement home’ if he’s so confident that he’ll be back at Westminster come next year. Although, as Davidbrew has already said, his retirement seems to have started some time ago.

  • Michael Shilliday

    after that decided to go off and concentrate on his career.

    oh yerman, you just don’t do it justice! He and the great paitriotic leader had quite a falling out didnt they………

  • yer_man

    Michael.
    I dont doubt for a second he was a bit miffed. He was MP in all but name and was denied the opportunity (because the DUP, for the sake of unionist unity, stood down). There was a difference of opinion obviously but he took it with good grace and went on to a very successful legal career.

    Lets remember though, that discussion on 1980’s political life is a bit of a tangent to the issue in hand – one which I see you have found remarkably little to comment upon.

    No case put forward as to why Roy Beggs can hold the seat now that the DUP are clearly the largest unionist party within the constituency. No mention of the political cartwheeling Roy Beggs has carried out in the last few years. No defence put forward for why an ‘active’ (now there’s a laugh) MP, and alleged part-time farmer, should be pressing so hard to build a retirement home and causing a massive planning row in the process. But then stig of the dump is well used to rows like that so he’s probably willing to sit it out.

  • Davros

    I think the changes within Unionism are healthy.
    Ebb and flow.

  • Christopher Stalford

    Yer_man

    You appear to have scared the bold Michael away!

  • yer_man

    Davros,
    Would this the kind of ebb and flow which casts the UUP in the role of King Canute???

  • Davros

    I look at it this way. The competition within Unionism, the diversity and the movement is healthy. Look at SF. God help anybody who doesn’t toe the line. They get the Hanratty Treatment.

  • yer_man

    Davros
    I’m all for competition – sometimes its just too easy to go for the cheap jibe though.

    Full agreement about the SF point though.

  • willowfield

    Sammy Wilson: oh dear.