This morning I attended the SDLP Bloggers breakfast. It was a reasonably good showing, an event when you meet some faces behind the world of the World Wide Web.
I will not direction conversation here away from Mick’s post earlier other than to say that I thought it was a good event with a decent showing. I would raise my glass to the SDLP for what I thought was a very good idea.
Anyway, I wanted to give some analysis here on the SDLP and Alban’s chances in Europe. (See below)
Adds: Check out O’Conall StreetFirstly, he will do well to beat their candidate’s vote in 2004, Belfast City Councillor Martin Morgan (now retired from Politics). Alban is a pro-European voice, their campaign and message is clear in that. I thought their PPB is very good, connecting man (Alban) as a family man and the ordinary working people. He covered the benefits (he feels) their are in Europe and talks about a missing ‘pro-European voice’ since 2004.
The SDLP Chief Executive, Michael Savage told me that Alban, selected in September last year, had been on the canvass since December 15th. There were reports of positive responses particularly from Sinn Fein areas – like Newry and Armagh. However Alban made clear his challenge: getting the ‘sit at home’ voters out. This is the same challenge for the DUP, UUP and Alliance. Apathy will be a major factor in this election.
This election is key for the SDLP after the Assembly election in March 2007. The SDLP are slowly in melt-down, but appear to be organised and fighting back.
Sinn Fein voters didin’t come out in the Fermanagh by-election, but do not expect them to turn out for the SDLP either. It was admitted to me that they were finding it hard to break the ground in Fermanagh South Tyrone due to an increase in young voters, voting for Sinn Fein.
The SDLP has a fairly active Young Wing, despite an almost non-existence at Queen’s. They have a good press team around them and seem willing and ready for a fight. However, will Alban’s, and the SDLP’s position on Europe discredit them? I think it might, however this election as with any in NI is more about ‘count the Prod’, or ‘count the Catholic’. People will vote according to their identity.
Ulster’s people are generally seen as Eurosceptic, however it probably boils more down to the point of what is Europe doing for me? It is so so far away!
My views would differ from Alban in alot of ways, however he seems like a genuine and hardworking man wanting to do his best for his people.