Another pretender to Lady Sylvia’s North Down Westminster seat is DUP MLA Peter Weir, who quickly leaps on an obvious question (and one that, no doubt, he hopes will distract from his own party’s hokey cokeying views on whether to consult or not consult their Executive colleagues):
This is an intriguing development. Since the European election, Ian has managed to travel quite a distance. At the time of the European election, he was describing himself as the most pro-European candidate. Now he has joined a supposedly Eurosceptic party. People will want to know what has prompted such a move. Suggestions of candidature for Westminster elections have been floated by commentators.
Reg Empey needs to come clean. Is this an opening prelude to deselecting Lady Hermon? This is an important question and it wont be going away. The people of North Down deserve to know if the UUP, in order to appease their Tory bosses are going to stab their single MP in the back and replace her on the ticket with Ian Parsley, said the DUP MLA.
Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty