Colum Eastwood nominated to stand against Big Al for leader of the SDLP…

It’s all going on with the SDLP today. Here’s the UTV report:

Nominations closed at 5pm on Friday and sources close to Colum Eastwood have told UTV he has yet to make a decision, but will be consulting his colleagues.

It will be next week before it is known if both will accept their nomination.

Meanwhile Upper Bann MLA Dolores Kelly and South Belfast MLA Fearghal McKinney have been put forward for deputy leader.

There have been rumbles against McDonnell since the May elections. Some opponents guess that up to ten of the party’s eleven duh, fourteen MLA’s are planning privately opposed to the party leader.

Intriguingly one of those closest to McDonnell, Fearghal McKinney is challenging Dolores Kelly the long time deputy leader.

It may well suit McDonnell whose people are saying that they’ve had a strongly positive reaction to his blunt choice of words in Glengormley yesterday, to draw out his opponents in a big political fight.

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