TUV European Selection Convention- Jim Allister is the candidate

So, I wandered over to the Park Ave Hotel in East Belfast tonight to see the TUV announce as their candidate for the European election.

TUV Jim Allister to run for European ElectionThe party room meeting was comprised of around 170 people.

The evening began with a speech by the party leader Jim Allister, followed by a Q&A were delegates got the chance to ask questions about the upcoming elections.

I suppose the end result was never really in doubt but it was interesting to see how the TUV operates up close. Some notes, there were some younger people in the audience which I did find a bit strange as the TUV does project an older image at times.

I suppose the main question is can the party get that 66,000 votes that they were able to achieve in 2009. Going into this election, the party definately has the most to lose.

In terms of council candidates the party is aiming to run 50 across NI

Full audio of Jim Allister’s remarks here

Picture courtesy of Samuel Severn

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  • babyface finlayson

    If elected he will have to stand down as an MLA,is that correct.
    A pity really as he was a useful thorn in the side of the big 2.

  • Comrade Stalin

    Good scoop David.

    Makes sense on the part of the TUV. Frankly, Jim is their only asset at the moment.

  • gaygael

    I think he has smelt the wind. I think he senses that this is the opportunity for him to rival his score in 2009. He is the natural home of many of those disgruntled with the dup.

    In 2009 he was european incumbent and got 13.7% He lost his seat, and with no elected position he harped from the sidelines for nearly two years.
    In 2011 he was deemed elected after not reaching quota at the assembly. The tuv scored 2.5% across the north and 11.8% in north antrim. This was a poor show for them exacerbated by limited electoral positions, Jim being out of the media.

    Since then we have various dup scandals, the much subsided paisley documentary, incompetent dup ministers, a too cosy relationship with Sinn Fein, flegs, twaddle, long kesh, and he is the most effective version of opposition in the assembly. He piloted through the ann travers bill, and has been vocal on the otr scandal. He is a constant thorn in the dup side.
    There is a residual, never never element in unionism and he is the standard bearer for that. He will mop up all the micro fleggers and any ukip expected surge and those annoyed at the dup. This is there opportunity to show their discontent with the dup. They were angry in 2009 and had a credible candidate! In opposition to the dup. I don’t believe the uup are. He will also harm Nicholson. And looking at the pattern of transfers in the last election, 53% went to Nicholson.

    It is whether he stays in ahead of Nicholson. I reckon there are around 230k unionist votes if turnout is similar.
    Does anybody credibly think that the uup will get near quota or even 100k of those? I See dodds getting around that but not much more. And the rest split between Jimbo and Nicholson. Nicholson benefits from any elimated ni21, alliance and greens, unlike tuv which is transfer repellent from the centre.
    Sf above quota. And a surprising number of number twos for Anna Lo? SDLP lucky to hold steady.

  • Charles_Gould

    Gaygael makes good points.

    I would say that Jim Allister is a very effective opposition politician – makes him “added value” in the Assembly relative to just another DUP MLA.. The voters will reward him in the next Assembly election, even many who don’t agree with his position on a lot of things, but still see him as providing a useful service in an Assembly that lacks formal opposition.

  • Charles_Gould

    The BBC is reporting that the TUV will fight the election on two “complimentary tracks”.

    I wonder if the mis-spelling of complementary is the BBC’s or Jim’s?

  • Comrade Stalin

    Just listened to the audio (or half of it before I clicked it off). God that’s depressing.

  • Morpheus

    Anyone think Jim might be hedging his bets in case Stormont does fall to try to ensure that he at least has a salary coming in? Pragamtic

  • Drumlins Rock

    This has nothing to do with Europe, it is No1. a realisation that the council candidates need the boost from both an increased profile for Jim & the party.
    and No2.a realisation that not standing was a bigger risk to Jim profile than coming our with a much smaller vote.

    The 66k last time was a perfect storm with expenses scandal, fresh splits in DUP and the massive boost incumbency gives any candidate. If he can keep third place in Unionism that will be an achievement for him this time. Otherwise his standing might just get out a few more voters that will get Nicholson over the line a little bit sooner, and the TUV / DUP bun fight is always amusing for the rest of us to watch.

  • Charles_Gould


    Jim is 60 and has I am sure a very secure arrangement for his retirement – he does not need a salary coming in. Also the Stormont is most unlikely to fall. So no.

  • mjh

    Spot on Drumlin Rock

    Committing to the race this late looks like the (possibly) last throw of the dice by the TUV in an attempt to stay in the game.

    To stand a chance of winning Allister would need not only to beat his 13.7% share of the poll in 2009 – he would need to be at least 5% above the UUP.

    Something like DUP 18%, TUV 16%, UUP 11%, NI21 2%, UKIP 1% might just see him there. If the gap were smaller transfers from NI21, Greens and Alliance would carry Nicholson ahead of him.

    Personally I think he will be lucky to hit 7%.

    But his Euro candidacy will give valuable support to the TUV’s Council candidates – which they desperately need. In 2011 the party won 6 council seats. Without any improvement on that vote the boundary changes would be likely to reduce them to 3, or at best 4.

    A drop in vote could wipe them out – and seriously damage the electoral machine in North Antrim that Allister will need to be re-elected to the Assembly.

  • Charles_Gould

    Jim Allister’s MLA seat is safe as houses in my opinion!

  • boondock

    Jim Allister should be OK in North Antrim but I wouldnt say safe as houses and his position would be in serious jeopardy if the number of seats in each constituency is ever reduced

  • tomthumbuk

    Let’s face it Jim’s objective is to undermine the DUP.
    It is ironic, because the DUP’s rise to prominence was by concentrating on undermining the UUP, whilst purporting to “Smash Sinn Fein!”.
    I always look forward to hearing him speaking, because, whilst not often agreeing with what he says, he can put forward an argument in a way that most of the rest of the Stormont dummies cannot, even when they are reading from a script that someone else has written!

  • Drumlins Rock

    There is also the financial implications, £5000 deposit is just for starters ( I think its 6.26% of the vote at any stage to get it back so keeping in front of UKIP could have finincial implications too! ) The spending limit is £135K, even as a small fraction of that it is a big burden for a small party. Yes they were wise thinking about it seriously, but being indesive looks bad, look at NI21 🙂

    Last time round he had the “lone outsider” advantange taking on the establishment, he is just part of the herd now, I think he will struggle despite what most people would agree has been an excellent performanace at Stormont.

  • mjh

    Drumlin Rocks

    Good point about the cost of the deposit. Apart from that the Euro candidacy need not cost them much. They plan to field 50 Council candidates – so they would be producing electoral addresses anyway. All they need do is print the local leaflets in a common style with Jim for Europe on one side with the other used for the local candidates (pictured with Jim).

    No extra printing costs, no extra envelopes, no extra delivery costs, no extra work.

    Actually the most impressive thing is that such a small party can field so many council candidates.

  • Comrade Stalin

    You have to run in the European elections to be considered a serious political force in politics here, even if you are considered unlikely to win. Allister will keep his deposit, and it’s a good opportunity to bang that tedious drum of his.

    Amusingly, as a separate point, LAD have noted one of the TUV council candidates posing with a fake weapon next to UFF and UDA flags. Don’t hold your breath waiting for Jim to do anything about it.

  • ayeYerMa

    “there were some younger people in the audience which I did find a bit strange as the TUV does project an older image at times.”

    I can understand why McCann doesn’t want to get it — that’s what happens when Republicans and other leftist enemies of the state only ever talk to each other and believe their own propaganda , such as the absolute nonsense that dominates discussion on this blog on a daily basis .

    This should not be surprising at all. I believe we are going to see a massive shift towards the libertarian right amongst the youth right across the UK. The leftist elite are the tyrranous establishment to rebel against these days as a cultural Marxist (calling itself “liberal”) dictatorship is the only thing that any British person younger than 30 has ever known to have the power — watch one episode of BBC Quisling Time with David Dimbleby and I know no intelligent person with even a mild hint of backbone who doesn’t want to vomit after getting a quarter of the way through.

    The TUV have made a big mistake in not more formally concreting relationships with the UK’s fastest growing and only mainstream in-touch straight-talking party. All they are doing is vote fracturing and wasting energy in party political nonsense. UKIP have vast potential to poll far higher than any of these local commentators predict, but that requires or local parties to get their acts together and see the bigger picture beyond their narrow local party interest.

  • gaygael

    Ni21 due to announce tonight.
    I have been suggesting Tina for ages, but we shall wait and see.

    Ayeyerma, hyperbole much? I worry for you.

    I think it will be tight between Nicholson and tuv. Micro fleggers and ukip will transfer significantly to him. En masse, even. And traditionally I would say that centre transfers to Nicholson would keep him in. But have the uup done anything to shore up centre transfers. I would suggest that they have become more repellent. Flegs, twaddle, long kesh, 21 days plus when claiming haas was 80-90% there! Nicholson himself seems a moderate and his incumbency, but has not been profile.
    The only candidate so far that has had significant profile is Anna Lo. SDLP pretty much invisible.
    I think that ni21 have left it too late at this stage. I think they will be lucky to break 5%.

  • Occasional Commentator

    @ayeYerMa – “The TUV have made a big mistake in not more formally concreting relationships with the UK’s fastest growing and only mainstream in-touch straight-talking party.”

    The reason for that most likely is that Nigel Farage wouldn’t want to touch them with a 40 foot barge pole.
    Farage is a common sense reasonable straight talking guy, but I doubt he wants to see his party becoming embroiled in the inter-christian sectarian bigotry & tribalism that’s the hallmark of the likes of the TUV.

  • Droch_Bhuachaill

    Is this the same Jim Allister who wants to ban GAA jerseys from UUJ? Surely no fully-grown adult can take this man seriously, never mind vote for him?