BelTel Poll: Alliance and UUP battleground seats…

We’ve got hold of a table which looks at those battleground constituencies in which the UUP and the Alliance Party may be battling for seats in the next election. Bear in mind that the error margin increases exponentially for constituency level analysis…

For that reason, I’d advise ignoring any small numbers. Big numbers would be indicative of some indication of movement.

If this were a more robust sample we might note that in many places where there’s Alliance advance does not account for all of the drop in the UUP’s support. In Strangford which seems more stable than North Down or East Belfast there is still some advance in Alliance sentiment.

I think we can probably say North Down is currently slipping from the grasp of the Ulster Unionists (this is where the DUP have deployed their most comprehensive UUP lookalike team).. You’d back Alliance to take a second seat here, even if the Greens successfully defend theirs (harmony in the Wilson household)!

With or without a boundary change, East Belfast must also be on the party’s critical list after they all but abandoned the Protestant middle class vote in the last election. If there is any surplus will be critical to Alliance in holding ground.

I wouldn’t venture a guess with any of the others, except to note the only positive figure shows in Strangford, the party leader’s base which showed exceptional control to bring home two last time.

No second seat in Lagan Valley, on these figures, for Alliance. In fact they seem to building up capital in very local citadels of power.. One of the few places that the UUP have run a consistent and committed candidate has been West Belfast is also the only place they’ve outdoing (by a tiny amount) Alliance.

  • IJP

    … and of course that committed candidate is now a member of the Conservative Party…

    One thing I would note, Mick, is that there were boundary changes. An obvious example is East Antrim, where in fact the Alliance notional vote (i.e. versus the same boundaries) was up. But that makes little difference to your overall point.

  • Mick Fealty

    More carelessness on the part of the UUP… though having said that, putting hard working candidate like Bill Manwaring into a no hoper like West Belfast helped no one but the DUP candidate I suspect…

  • Comrade Stalin

    Mick, you make that sound like the UUP actually had some sort of decision making process, rather than an out of control free-for-all where the party expended resources on the vanity of local candidates.

  • Mick Fealty

    Well bears saying again. Or once more at least.

  • Comrade Stalin

    It certainly does bear saying again, given that (apparently as nobody has noticed) many said candidates are set to repeat said failure once more as part of the “new” NI Conservatives.

  • New Blue

    Comrade, you are making assumptions with none of the facts. Let’s wait until 2014-2016 to see who stands where and for what.

    The NI Conservatives will be doing things in a very different way, you will see some indication of that at the launch event today.

    On a side note it is good to see that the figures seem to show that the electorate respond to hard work – a lesson for any person who may want to seek to represent the good people of Northern Ireland.

  • Mick Fealty

    I’d venture a guess that the laziest MLA works harder than the average MP. It is just not clear they work at the right things.

  • New Blue

    I’d agree Mick, but the importance of working ‘on the ground’ is missed by many – each vote earned by hard work is a vote that is more likely to stay with the person who earned it.

  • dwatch

    Well both alliance and the UUP will at least do 10 or 20 times better than the sad rebranded Northern Ireland Conservatives.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-northern-ireland-18430849

  • OneNI

    The ‘story’ of this Bel Tel poll is not the bald men fighting over a comb i.e. will Alliance or the UUPget 9 or 11% of the vote and one Minister each in a stagnant political system but can anyone shake up the system?
    Turn out is plummeting, the Assembly is increasingly seen as hopeless, the poll points to continued disillusionment and we are debating if Alliance and UUP can persuade 4, 5 or 6 members out of every 100 members of the electorate to vote for them?

  • The North Down results highlight the decline of the UUP as a significant political party.
    In the 39 years since I was first involved in North Down elections(the 1973 Assembly election as election agent for the NILP candidate Ken Young) the UUP vote has fallen from 62% to last years miserable 10%.
    This decline has accelerated in the past decade with UUP
    party representation falling from
    1MP,3MLA’s,8 councillors to
    0MP,1MLA and 4 councillors
    This is a result of a lack of leadership,internal disputes,no work on ground and confused policies which do not relate to the concerns of the electorate.
    There is no evidence that this decline will be reversed as indicated by last weeks farce when the UUP party leader Mike Nesbitt welcomed independent ND councillor Austen Lennon into the party only to be told by the existing councillors that they would not accept him.
    It is not surprising therefore that Alliance had its biggest increase in North Down and I agree with your prediction of a second seat next time.Indeed if Anne who missed out by around 50 votes had received support from the party she would have taken the seat in 2011.

  • jthree

    Is Tim Lewis still involved with NI Tories or is he too busy with his bankruptcy?

    LEWIS, TIMOTHY GRANDTULLY
    Occupation Employment Agent t/a TLR Resourcing Ltd,, t/a
    34c Main Street, Moira, BT67 0LE.
    In the The High Court of Justice in Northern Ireland
    No 026699 of 2012
    Date of Presenting Petition: 02 March 2012.
    Date of Bankruptcy Order: 28 May 2012.
    Whether Debtor’s or Creditor’s Petition: Creditor’s.

  • Comrade Stalin

    New Blue

    Comrade, you are making assumptions with none of the facts.

    Plenty of facts available :

    – the Conservatives haven’t got so much as a council candidate elected for 20 years.

    – they tried to jump into bed with the UUP and lost, heavily, despite being backed by a wealthy HQ.

    – the NI Conservatives have no activist base and no grassroots. There are no competent or experienced politicians in their ranks, so they don’t know how to run elections. They don’t even know how to deal with the media, noting that there is no visible coverage by the BBC or UTV of their “launch” today.

    If you wish to introduce further facts into this discussion please be my guest.

    Let’s wait until 2014-2016 to see who stands where and for what.

    Why bother when we already know what will happen ? They’ll run a clatter of candidates, and they’ll all lose their deposits. It’s the same thing that has happened in the most recent 20-odd elections that have happened.

  • Comrade Stalin

    It is not surprising therefore that Alliance had its biggest increase in North Down and I agree with your prediction of a second seat next time.Indeed if Anne who missed out by around 50 votes had received support from the party she would have taken the seat in 2011.

    Brian, I bet you’ll have loads of friends in the Alliance Party if you keep going around saying in public that your wife lost because they failed to support her campaign.

  • CS If you identify North Down as a target seat and then allow the candidate to spend most of the 4 week campaign canvassing on her own.Not only does this undermine the morale of the candidate but it also undermines her credability with the electorate.