High noon in South Antrim…

AND so, at last, Reg Empey grasped the bull by the horns and decided that he too will enter the election fray. It might paint over the cracks in the South Antrim Association – since Watson was prepared to stand aside for Reg – but can he do the business?

Of course, if he actually wins, Reg can’t be a double-jobbing unionist party leader given his opposition to such shennanigans, which would mean a new UUP Assembly leader (Danny Kennedy presumably?). But if he loses, it’s likely to fatally damage his leadership and could well be the final bullet in the foot of the entire Tory-UUP project. I know they’ve no MPs since Sylvia quit, but imagine the UUP getting none elected…

If nothing else, you gotta admire Reg for finally growing a pair to take on Willie with such high stakes at risk. There should be plenty of crack in South Antrim, as Adrian Watson wouldn’t say.

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  • Mick Fealty

    Congrats to Ivor for scooping us and the Beeb… Constituency report out first thing this morning…

    Night all…

  • [b]Decisions, Decisions, Decisions …[/b]

    Of course, such a move to stand for election to the Westminster Parliament rather than the Stormont Assembly tells everyone everything too. And we all know a lot more about the integrity and honesty of that ages old talking shop and mad house, don’t we, and its attachment to the reality of everyone else’s lives and the rules and regulations and taxes they are loaded with to pay for their expensive indulgences and leading ruinous excesses.

    It appears to be a Right Royally Tolerated House of Self Indulgent Excess and Spinning Deceit rather than anything else a great deal more noble. Or do you see it differently through glassy eyes and information feebly processed for mindless consumption?

    Such Rampant Idiocy is an International Disgrace and an InterNetional Vulnerability which will, however, Always be Ruthlessly and Comprehensively Exploited to ExtraOrdinarily Render ITs Fix and that can only be a Good Thing, for without the Truth, the Whole Truth and Nothing but the Truth being Shared, is Everything a Sham Servering a Scam Supporting a Shame with Everyone in the House to Blame and Flame/Prosecute and Convict, for they Live their Lives for Free at your Pleasure and Expense do they not, and charge you Dearly for it with Taxes on Practically Everything to keep you Poor and Oppressed and Suppressed and Slaves to a Rotten to the Core System, where Mass Ignorance allows for and follows Crass Arrogance.

    However, Advancing Intelligence and Global Instant Information Flows through Networks InterNetworking Deliver Knowledge and Light to Shine into and onto Dark and Dingy Deeds which Pervert the Natural Course of Better Things ….. and one does Sincerely Hope for the Greater Benefit of their own very Good Health and Safety, that the Endemic Arrogance and Systemic Ignorance are Comprehensively Replaced with a Beta System of Man Management and Virtual Governance for a much Better Administration of Future Options and Mutually Beneficial and Rewarding Hedged Derivatives.

    And should that Require the Suitably Energised IT Private Sector to render the Politics Show and Charade a Novelty Thing of the Past and an Unpleasant Memory to be Buried and Swiftly Forgotten in Changed Times, then so be it and Let IT Be.

  • Frustrated Democrat

    Congratulations to Sir Reg on joining the fray he will make a considerable contribution to the cabinet when he is elected and will make sure Northern Ireland is treated fairly.

    Wille and the DUP’s worst nightmare has just happened, so that is one up to the new alliance.

  • Harry J

    Sir Reg on joining the fray he will make a considerable contribution to the cabinet when he is elected………..

    is this guy joking? reg is out of his depth as a councillor, let alone MP>

    Reg will be beat, Ucunf will fold, the UUP will be run by Basil

    Bye Bye reg.

    Lets remember Reg is the 3rd or 4th choice to run in the seat , he is only doing it because they could not find anyone else, pure and simple.

  • NMCNSA

    Fantastic news and great honour for South Antrim to have the party leader stand. Now lets get Willie ‘5 jobs’ McCrea out!

  • NMCNSA

    And there speaks the old negative DUPer Harry J, bitter and twisted with all the lies his masters have fed him.
    UU&C will come out of this election with at least 2 or 3 MPS and our rebuilding process will continue.
    Take a look at some of our candidates, South Belfast Paula Bradshaw, East Londonderry Lesley Macaulay and see a party thats young and energised.
    Then look at the DUP line up, the same old NO men who have told so many lies to the electorate that its a surprise they remember were they live and marred by sleaze and corruption.
    The DUP are on the way to a well deserved judgement day with the voters!

  • Is it a brave decision by Wee Reggie or his last throw of the dice, as zero points in the Westminsters means he will be gone as leader anyway? If he is the only UCUNF returned he may have to go as there will surely be mass panic in the UUP in the run up to the Assembly elections and the (correct) appraisal that UCUNF has been a failure.

    But, whatever the long term political outcomes I suppose we should give Wee Reggie the benefit of the doubt for having the courage to put his political neck on the line and fair play to the little fellah if he pulls it off.

    Protocol warning: Please adjust your mindset
    For those of a particulalry tribal and/or sensitive disposition and those unable to judge an arguement on it’s merits please be aware that the term Unionist in my name is not an entrirely accurate reflection of my political views though it should also be noted that my paternal grandfather was a keen supporter of the Union and I am invoking the FIFA grandparent rule and am opting to call myself so. (I’m sure he would have approved.)

  • NMCNSA

    Or we return with 3 or 4 candidates elected and Sir Reg is rightly hailed as the man who saved Unionism!
    The real test for the DUP will be assembley elections when there big gun MPs wont be able to stand and the straw men behind them fold.
    UU&C are on the march!

  • NMCNSA,

    “Or we return with 3 or 4 candidates elected and Sir Reg is rightly hailed as the man who saved Unionism!”

    If that happens then then the boy Reggie will have done very good but do you equally agree that less than 2 and he will surely have to dive on on his sword and project UCUNF will have been a failure or at least a severe disappointment?

  • NMCNSA

    Its not my place to tell Sir Reg what to do. The man has integrity and will do whats best for the party and not himself (take note Peter this is what real leaders do).

  • dwatch

    [i]Or we return with 3 or 4 candidates elected and Sir Reg is rightly hailed as the man who saved Unionism![/i]

    You sound like McNarry NMCNA. A lambeg drum out of tune.

  • NMCNSA

    Really I’ll take that as a compliment! thanks very much dwatch

  • NMCNSA,

    “Its not my place to tell Sir Reg what to do”

    Would you agree that less that 2 seats would a) put Reg’s position under pressure and/or b) represent a poor result for UCUNF?

  • Drumlins Rock

    MU, I think he could just about get away with it if the overall percentage of the vote were to increase significantly, it is quite a massive swing required, and if they were to miss out by a small margin in a couple of seats then he could go on if elected himself, however he probably has to win now he has put his hat in the ring in the easiest seat, but who knows what the 6th of May will bring, things can change alot before then.

  • NMCNSA

    Moderate Unionist I think winning 1 seat would be an improvement on what we have currently and will show party is heading in right direction

  • dwatch

    [i]Moderate Unionist I think winning 1 seat would be an improvement on what we have currently and will show party is heading in right direction[/i]

    Bit of a come down from yesterday NMCNSA, when you were so confident four CU’s would win seats. Empey is toast, he can prance around all of SA he wants flaunting Teresa May or other Tories in support, but the SA electorate will be voting in Wee Wille McCrea for another term of office. He can then join the Tories like David Trimble. When he is at it take mr mystery man Campbell with him.

  • Drumlins Rock, NMCNSA,

    leaving my (slight) bias aside I more or less agree that 1 one seat anywhere plus an overall good showing as defined by a holding of the % obtained in the Euros although disappointing will allow Reg to trot out a few old chestnuts about first time for UCUNF at Westminsters and building for the future.

    The reality though, with the DUP in disarray over the Robinsons, is that they should really be gaining ground and it looks like slow steady decline as UCUNF will have been tried and shown not to be the vote winner if was made out to be in 2 elections.

    Any pro-Unioinist noises by Cameron will be greeted by Republican dissers with glee as they they seek to undermine SF and even if Wee Reggie gets some sort of UK government postion this may only serve to put him in a very awkward position if the Tories do anything that favours SF or Nationalism even if their hand is forced by Europe for example on minority language rights.

  • Driftwood

    I see Willie McCrea has released his lection video for the campaign…

    Be really good to hear him cover this song.

  • Kevin Barry

    I know I have said this before and I know this may come across as naive in the extreme, but could the UU not have sorted this out a whole lot earlier rather than having to go through the whole drawn out process of the local constituency selecting someone, then un-selecting them?

    As someone noted previously, this constituency is low hanging fruit and it should have been a priority to have the nomination of a strong candidate sowed up as early as possible.

    Reg stands a good chance of winning, but he and the UU have went out of their way to throw this

  • NMCNSA

    Moderate Unionist

    In many ways I have to agree with you, in my view when you have someone on the ground you don’t take your foot off there neck until they stop squirming.

    Sir Reg however is a gentleman and as he stated last night he didn’t want to make hay from the Peters problems in his private life, which in many ways he should be commended for and certainly not a favour the DUP would return if the boot were on the other foot.

    I think we did make a mistake in not going after the DUP all guns blazing in but many Unionists would have found it distasteful!

    It seems NI politics is still a gentlemans game after all

  • Coll Ciotach

    If the ucunf vote rises compared to uu vote is it because, after the performance of PR, and the other proclivities, the DUP lost rather than they won?

  • NMCNSA

    So nothing to do with us attracting people who didn’t vote previously then?
    Say for example the majority of 13-35 year olds who are sick of the same old poisonous politics of hate as preched by the DUP & their mates in SF!

  • Coll Ciotach

    Well that is the question isn’t it?

    Did UCUNF attract those people or did the interview and events surrounding Peter Robinson put them off?

    What would you think?