UUP running three in Strangford…

It seems the UUP is to run two three candidates in Strangford – one of the constituencies where the DUP fancies its chances for four seats. We have this email from a Slugger regular, who has his doubts about the strength of the candidate the party has selected to run for John Taylor’s (now Lord Kilclooney) seat. Update: Hmmm… that would be three… Michael Henderson, ten years a councillor in Castlereagh, who is Carryduff based…

“You may be interested to know that Strangford UUP held their selection meeting for the Assembly Election on Friday last. They are running two candidates and selected:

David McNarry MLA
Angus Carson

McNarry should get re-elected however Carson is not a strong candidate. He was a surprise selection and only got the ticket because Johnny Andrews failed to provide transport for his supporters.

Carson is a fisherman with a small powerbase on the Ards Peninsula, he is an Ards councillor. In my view, he is a poor speaker and is not able to articulate his views clearly. The vote that went to Lord Kilclooney last time will not automatically transfer to Carson”

And yet, this looks like a more conservative/realistic approach than the party has taken in other areas. The geographic spread is certainly better with Carson than a Comber centric McNarry/Andrews ticket. And the fact that he is already has local form as a councillor might also make him a stronger candidate in the eyes of the local Association. Michael Henderson

  • Way Icit

    Anybody know how many were at the selection meeting and what the voting figures were?

  • Elvis Parker

    Strangford UUP seem to diverging from rest of Party – most other constituencies would have run 3 to avoid dissapointing poor Johnny

  • Eddie

    I think it is a weak ticket and would agree with the analysis in the e-mail.

    The DUP will press strongly for four in this constituentcy.

    Poor Johnny will be gutted!

  • Rebecca Black

    The decision of whether to run two or three candidates in Strangford has not been taken yet.

    Three candidates have been selected with the decision of whether to run all three to be made closer to the time. A sensible line given that we cannot be sure as to whether an election will be in March, the autumn or even happen at all.

  • the other one

    would have to agree with Mick on this one there is a better geographic spread.

    Would have prefered to see Rebecca on the ticket though

  • strangforder

    Carson is currently mayor of Ards and was deputy mayor for two years when the DUP blocked an Ulster Unionist becoming mayor. He is well known in the constituency.

  • Elvis Parker

    Yeah I’d vote for Rebecca.
    Isnt she a Tory though?

  • the other one

    Whats a tory these days?

  • Rebecca Black

    Ulster Unionist through and though and fiercely proud of it Elvis!

    Many thanks for the support but the UUP have selected excellent candidates representing all the major areas of the constituency, all elected already to council or assembly and all well known on their respective patches.

  • the other one

    All have to be ratified

    Lets have a campaign to get Rebecca on the ticket.

  • Rebecca Black

    Many thanks but I didn’t run for selection and I don’t want to run in the election.

  • Elvis Parker

    I’m confused Rebecca – are there third UUP candidates?

  • Elvis Parker

    I mean ‘three’ = told you I was confused!

  • Rebecca Black

    See my earlier post Elvis. Strangford UUP have selected three candidates but will not decide whether to run two or three until closer at the time.

    As Mick has just updated the thread, the three are David McNarry who is the sitting MLA, Cllr Angus Carson from Portavogie who is currently mayor of ards and Cllr Michael Henderson from Carryduff. The three main areas of Strangford are covered with Newtownards left for all three to canvass together.

  • Tampico

    Have they selected three or haven’t they?

    When will they take this decision?

    When the penny finally drops that3 is fantasyland and even 2 is questionable?

    What an inspiring confidence boost it would be for whoever Mcnarry’s running mate might be!

    Why such caution here but foolishness in South Belfast, East Antrim, East Londonderry etc

  • Way Icit

    Old codgers like myself instead of Jonny Andrews?! Come on guys – stand aside and let the next generation through.

  • Confused

    Is it true you have selected two candidates and have TWO reserves?
    A picture of decisiveness!

  • Rebecca Black

    No, as I said above, Strangford have selected three candidates and will decide closer to the time whether to run all three or to run two.

  • the other one

    Johnny would be disappointed to be third in a race for two positions on the ticket. To be fourth in a race for three really puts into perspectic the the need for Council experience.

  • Observer

    There are no successful looking candidates in Strangford UUP. Probably their own fault.

    Where did Gareth McGimpsey go?

  • Percival


    To be fair, even if his old man can’t see the writing on the wall, I would say young Mr. McGimpsey is too smart to waste his time and money on a hiding to nothing.

  • Alan

    Indecision or cash saving? It’s hard to tell.

  • TomTom

    Another mess in the UUP.Poor Johnny will not be running, so much for his New Ireland views.What must Ringland, McCrea and Howe think now.Just heard there was a problem at the Mid Ulster selection meeting when some of their members objected to the way Armstrong carried out his selection.It would appear that the whole process was flawed.

  • Bruce101

    I think they should run all three. Three duds. Together they would not make one good candidate. Why do the UUP make it so easy. Goodbye UUP.

  • ardsman

    “for all three to canvass together”

    it’d be quare crack if the DUP managed that in the Peninsula, given the antics of Shannon and Drysdale against their running mate Kennedy in the last Council election.

  • Observer

    As I’ve said before – the UUP is committing political suicide by selecting 3 candidates.

    They are making the DUPs job much easier and the DUP deserve a rocking.

  • Crataegus

    DUP 50 -56%
    UUP 21- 23%
    Alliance about 9% but possibly 14% and slight rise in this constituency
    SDLP 7%
    SF 3%
    DUP field 4 one gets in with surplus still leaves others well placed and hard to pass.
    UUP fields 3 assume all equal (never happens) 7-8% each

    Sf will go out first and transfer to the SDLP shoving them up with Alliance. Next one out is lowest UUP. Even if all their votes transfer and do so evenly they will be sitting there with roughly the same vote as Alliance and the SDLP. The only way this strategy can work is if they mop up first preferences and squeeze the Alliance vote with the hope that Alliance go out first, but I can’t see that working in practice. Looks like DUP 4 UUP 1 Alliance 1 Last seat will be a tight race and depends how effective the SDLP campaign is in the peninsula..

    With 2 UUP candidates the Alliance seat would be more fragile and also there would be the possibility of a weak DUP candidate going out second.

    If there is a strategy behind this it is give up on fighting the DUP and go for Alliance?

  • steven

    I feel this is a mistake. Two maybe but I feel the DUP vote will hold up in Strangford like many other parts of the provience.

    But, as the UUP have done before – put up candidates and split the unionist vote and allowed a nationalist to take the seat!

  • darth rumsfeld

    but where are the UUP running extra candidates to pick up DUP seats? In Mid Ulster 1 UUP candidate looks suspiciously like “Protect Billy the Potato” more than any serious challenge to ropey DUP candidate McCrea junior(also preserving the family fiefdom IMO)

  • cityspires

    “If there is a strategy behind this it is give up on fighting the DUP and go for Alliance?”

    To be fair, I don’t think much strategic thinking has gone into this, its more along the lines that they have always run three to why not run three again and damn the reality.

  • Sammy Morse

    If there is a strategy behind this it is give up on fighting the DUP and go for Alliance?

    Strategic thinking? UUP? If they were going for Alliance they’d have picked someone like Gareth McGimpsey rather than three of the usual die-cast retread Orangemen. I think there is maybe a bit of misunderstanding of STV at work here as well.

    This is the DUP’s best bet for four but it’s not in the bag. They aren’t quite at four solid quotas (yet) and balancing four is hard, especially when one has the surname ‘Robinson’.

  • Purely out of interest, why would an Alliance type be tempted to float over by Junior Gimp? Not that I’m a great one for empirical reasoning, but – isn’t there some weight of statistical evidence now available to us that the only thing noteworthy about getting the name McGimpsey onto the ballot paper is, just how many traditional UUP votes can they, as a family, lose us?

  • Sammy Morse

    Purely out of interest, why would an Alliance type be tempted to float over by Junior Gimp?

    It’s beyond me personally, Karl, but then I never did claim to understand the electorate. Still, if they were going for more orange fringe you think they’d pick a more attractive slate for an “orange and lemon cordial” voter than three Orange woodentops, wouldn’t you?

    Here, I’m not the one who claimed there was any strategy behind this!

  • cityspires

    “This is the DUP’s best bet for four but it’s not in the bag. They aren’t quite at four solid quotas (yet) and balancing four is hard, especially when one has the surname ‘Robinson’.”

    So who are the other three the DUP intends to run?

  • darth rumsfeld

    could Becks please explain how the third man standing is to be picked or not? Is it that Henderson has agreed to be sweeper if Cunningplan House decide to reenact the Charge of the Light Brigade (“Unionists to the left of them, Unionists to the right of them. Into the valley of electoral death rode the..er three”), or is that fateful decision a local one?
    Or are Henderson and Carson to fight naked in front of a blazing log fire in Andrews’ country house for the honour of being McNasty’s reargunner?

  • Rebecca Black

    Yes, yes very amusing Darth.

    The decision will be made closer to the time but to be honest, can we even be sure if there will be an election? Or if there is whether it’ll be in march or in the autumn.

    Things still seem very uncertain and there is no point deciding things until whats happening becomes clearer. Rest assured, the relevant people will make the decision. Don’t worry ur pretty little head about Strangford, the bigger picture is much more interesting and relevant to you.

  • darth rumsfeld

    Becky called me pretty! ;0p
    Sadly as wrong about that as about politics!

  • Rebecca Black

    Indeed Darth, so who are the DUP running in Strangford since they ditched George Ennis?

    What exactly did he do to warrant being dumped? Criticise Iris’s latest hairdo?