Looks like there may be big changes in the post for tomorrow’s count…

It doesn’t do to anticipate the opening of boxes and the counting of votes, but the one pre-requisite for a turnover in politics was a significant rise in turnout. And just from the indications we and others have been sharing all day it looks like that’s been achieved.

After one of the most dismal campaigns in memory, it looks like the counts they will provide no end of entertainment (and misery): for victors the spoils, and for the observers barrel loads of popcorn.

The DUP find themselves in a minority of one, with almost everyone else finding their base territories motivated. Here’s a good example from East Belfast. Compare Knockgoney on the very outer edge of this Unionist constituency:

With Short Strand, a nationalist enclave in inner East:

There is, of course, a rise everywhere. But certainly in Belfast Nationalist and Alliance boxes appear to have filled at a much higher rate than unionist ones, and middle class ones more than working class boxes.

It is very likely we will see the regular patterns of the last ten years broken. The question is:,has it been enough to signify real change? Verification of the vote starts at 8 in the morning, after which we will get the real turnout figure.

Hopefully we’ll get the first tallies towards the end of the morning. I’ll be live blogging from the count centre in the morning, and will hope to bring you the odd live interview via Facebook Live, with a break for RTE’s News At One Special.

  • Devil Éire

    But it can be the combination of two Normal distributions.

  • grumpy oul man

    was Mr Stitts and the UDA support a factor in North Down.
    Was the terrorist/criminal group any help do you think after all didn’t they stand up for the DUP.

  • Guilty of Wrongthink

    More than £171m over five years was Nelson McCausland’s estimate on the language alone: “Over a period of five years, there was £88.4m revenue for Irish-medium schools, £30.9m capital for Irish-medium schools, £11.9m in grants to Irish language projects, £15m for the Irish Language Broadcast Fund, £11.1m to Foras na Gaeilge, £8m for An Ciste Infheistiochta Gaeilge (CIG), £5m for Irish language broadcasting from the BBC and then, on top of that, Caral ni Chuilin stripped away £0.9m from other programmes to pay for her Liofa initiative.

    That brings us to a total of more than £171m over five years.”
    http://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/opinion/news-analysis/nelson-mccausland-171-million-reasons-why-im-really-looking-forward-to-start-of-talks-about-equality-35494372.html

    Add up all the other “cultural” funds, including GAA and you’ll have hundreds of millions more.

    It is a dodo language. That is a fact, and we already spend far too much on it. Attempts to bring it into courts and waste resources translating government documents when all speak English will all be rightfully blocked. It concerns me not that some are enraged by facts. Probably most enraged being those who send their children to such schools for political indoctrination — a wasteful duplication (triplication if you include separate Catholic schools on top) of resources, with the only effect being isolation of their children from the rest of society.

  • grumpy oul man

    No the people whop define themselves as Irish will soon be in the majority, Unionism should be trying to make them Unionists as there are Scottish and welsh unionists.
    But to insult them and try to refuse their culture its rightful place you sort of guarantee that will be nationalists.
    So if you really are pro union and want it to survive you will have to give up the anti catholic anti Irish venom if you don’t it is indeed inevitable.
    its Unionists call, but i suspect you cant give up the anti Irish or anti Catholic thing so in advance as a nationalist i thank you.

  • Gopher

    Colum and Mike are goners

  • grumpy oul man

    Yep that was Nelson estimate but he also thinks he descended from the lost tribe of Israel.
    And he picked the biggest figures he could think off, nobody has costed it so nobody knows
    but you said “Hint: hundreds of millions are already wasted wasted on your “culture”” so could we have those figures please!
    “Probably most enraged being those who send their children to such
    schools for political indoctrination, with the only effect being
    isolation of their children from the rest of society.”
    LOL, you have never met any children from Irish medium schools have you, let me assure you they are not isolated from the rest of society as the very high percentage which attend University proves.
    and most do not study Irish at university as most kids who attend English speaking schools do not study English at UNi,
    they tend to study Engineering, law, medicine or one of the science’s, not isolated at all.
    You should get out of the bunker more.

  • grumpy oul man

    Were/are you not a Arlene fan!

  • Fear Éireannach

    Their party’s vote share didn’t change much, but they failed to get more.
    I doubt if Eastwood lost the SDLP any votes, more likely lack lustre candidates.

  • Barneyt

    Or bottled cucumbers

  • Barneyt

    It’s madness to think of a united ireland without the orange culture. It can’t simply be dissolved or washed off or as far as I know or removed through therapy. It’s in the islands fabric and literally in the fabric of the Irish flag. Some don’t like to hear that and I understand. If you can oust your culture from Ireland then those that do need to immediately dismiss their own. I’d like nothing better than to see the 12th turn into a sensationalist event that we can all enjoy as a spectacle, as we do St Pats.

  • Zorin001

    Mike a cert, Colum might hold on depending on final result.

  • Katyusha

    Colum did well in the campaign and revitalised the SDLP. I don’t think he’ll go; in any case, the SDLP don’t have a better candidate to replace him with.

  • Katyusha

    Laughing even harder that people think the DUP represent the future in any way, shape or form.

  • Msiegnaro

    They are holding the line.

  • Surveyor

    Holding the line against what?

  • Katyusha

    You’re right; the anti-lundy frenzies within unionism have never cared much for logic.

  • Katyusha

    Your analogy of the DUP with those who actually had to stand up and hold the line alone against an axis of evil in the past is insulting, and noted.

    The DUP is concerned with lining their own pockets and holding their own fantastically paid seats. That is all.

  • Gopher

    I’m not really buying into this he did well, But I agree there is probably few better, however that was a disaster. My faith in humanity is shot that 400,000 people can vote in that way after all this time.

  • Gopher

    I doubt he did either but next election SF will be running 3 in South Down, 2 in South Belfast 5 in west Belfast, 3 in Derry and wherever else they fancy. Eastwood might be a nice guy but 400,000 people just voted for proven idiots instead of his party or anyone else.

  • Gopher

    Unfortunately your now stuck with the DUP after this vote, they will be impossible to get rid off as their is no other viable alternative to voting SF

  • Gopher

    They have not a clue. The tough negotiators did not last long everyone of them on TV today was begging SF to let them back in Stormont. Such a change

  • Granni Trixie

    According to Trump it’s buying shoes or “bringing her to a furniture store or whatever” that does the trick.

  • Katyusha

    Fine by me. The DUP will not be able to appeal to Catholic voters, they alienate liberals and moderates, and are completely disattached from the young. They will not be able able to expand the appeal of unionism, instead having to settle for taking a solid share of an ever shrinking pie. If unionism is going to row in behind the DUP, then it is truly in terminal decline.

  • Gopher

    I voted DUP in the Westminister election because I took a punt on a hung parliament and thought we might get something good like passenger duty in exchange for support in that scenario. I thought she was the obvious choice for leader after Peter and did think she would be a good one for the DUP. She should have done the decent thing and resigned over RHI but when she decided not to it was her right under natural justice to remain. Thats about me and support for the DUP summed up.

    This to all intents and purposes is a Leftwing, Republican and Nationalist board so on various issues for the sake of debate you have to propose certain positions which are invariably taken as fandom. I’m not sure an athiest,, pro choice, dont give a monkies if you marry your budgie type of person who holds those beliefs dear can be classed as a fan of a DUP.

    For instance if I state today something that I have said for ages on here, that candidate for candidate they have the best operators that is why they escaped wipeout it is just a statement of objective fact which is fairly obvious now. Hope that clears it up.

  • Katyusha

    I wouldn’t be too hard in Colum, it’s a difficult gig being leader of the SDLP and he’s been head-and-shoulders more capable than any of their recent offerings. The SDLP will struggle as SF have usurped their political ground and don’t look like moving from it any time soon.

  • Gopher

    Its not working the revelence of the SDLP has gone He has to now be looking at merger or some other radical step because in the next election it will be DUP v SF except of course in the leafty suburbs of the demilitarize zones were people arnt paranoid eejits.

  • Gopher

    The mirror image of the DUP is SF, I know which one of the two is easier to get rid off anytime you want

  • Katyusha

    SF are busy getting ready for coalition with Fine Gael. They aren’t going anywhere, they’re a permanent fixture of Irish politics on both sides of the border now.

    Their reneweed focus on economic fairness and social justice means they could hardly be described as a mirror image of the DUP either. If anything, they’ve stolen the clothes of the SDLP and the Irish Labour party – the natural party of social democracy in Ireland.

  • Gopher

    Your faith is touching.

  • Msiegnaro

    Radical Republicans.

  • Barneyt

    It looks like there are 14 seats to go to DUP and as many as 7 to SF… which gives us DUP 28 SF 30? Surely not?

  • Skibo

    Want to review that now?

  • Msiegnaro

    He won I guess.

  • burnboilerburn

    Well done fella, you got there in the end by the skin of your teeth 😉