Choyaa: The UUP – Is the Former Empire Striking Back?

The Centenary of Northern Ireland has presented political Unionism with some of its most significant challenges, from dealing with a declining base, the Northern Ireland Protocol, an unenthused electorate, and greater political isolation than ever before, adding to this are the huge internal problems within both the DUP and UUP. This has all made the centenary year memorable if for all the wrong reasons. The UUP, in recent months, have been going through a transformation and following their party conference …

Read more…

Ian Marshall joins the UUP…

At the time of the last UUP leadership election, I said the best person for the job was Ian Marshall. There were just two minor issues, he was not a politician or even a member of the UUP. That situation has since been rectified, at least the UUP member part. Delighted to join Doug and the UUP. Time for a union of people, embracing inclusivity, diversity and building relationships across an island and between two islands. Thanks to @SuzyJourno & …

Read more…

SOAPBOX: As things go from bad to worse, the DUP can’t avoid the ripples of the ‘Beattie Bounce’

Dr. Clare Rice is a postdoctoral researcher at Newcastle University: a specialist in power-sharing and Northern Ireland’s politics. She tweets as @Clare_Rice_. All views expressed are the author’s own. The word ‘honeymoon’ evokes sentiments of a relaxing, happy and easy-going time. The big event is over, and in the bubble of positivity that follows, the focus shifts to the future. For Edwin Poots, this phase has been as good as non-existent since he became the new DUP Leader. The unceremonious …

Read more…

Fragmented Unionism and Broad Churches…

It has long been the formula within political Unionism that if a Unionist party is both united and able to accommodate a broad church of Unionist opinion then it will be the dominant Unionist party. In many ways this formula has never been attained within political Unionism, however, in recent times it’s becoming more difficult to find a party that can solve this formula, and never has this been more apparent than now. However, is the formula relevant in 2021 …

Read more…

Robbie Butler rules himself out of UUP leadership ‘at this stage’

Robbie Butler has ruled himself out of the race to be UUP leader in a statement issued this evening. Having listened to Doug speak on the media this week and spent some time with him personally, I believe we have a candidate who possesses the skills and attributes that are currently needed and it will be my pleasure to play any supporting role in the UUP Assembly team to make Northern Ireland a place we “ALL” want to live, work …

Read more…

Doug Beattie declares his bid for UUP Leader

The Upper Bann MLA, Doug Beattie has announced his bid to become the next leader of the UUP. UUP MLA @BeattieDoug has confirmed he will run as as a candidate to succeed outgoing party leader Steve Aiken pic.twitter.com/HzbCYQfl0M — Rebecca Black (@RBlackPA) May 10, 2021   “Doug Beattie MC MLA, UUP” by niassembly is licensed under CC BY-ND David McCannDavid McCann holds a PhD in North-South relations from University of Ulster. You can follow him on twitter @dmcbfs

Battle for the Soul of Unionism

At Féile an Phobail’s Leader’s debate back in August 2019, I was fascinated to witness a microcosmic battle – perhaps skirmish – for the soul of Unionism take place (starting at 1h05): Doug Beattie got quite animated after listening to Gregory Campbell’s defence of his own Britishness, one which came across as unnecessarily binary and reductive. Campbell’s comments earned several objections, but it is Beattie’s that is worth quoting in full: Let me be clear here. I’m an Irishman and …

Read more…

Has the UUP Past the Point of Rescue?

With the DUP being in a highly distressed state, this should be an opportune time for the UUP to step up and assume the leadership of Unionism. However, the UUP at present is not fit for purpose and few are considering them as a viable option at the forthcoming election. Rather than being contenders to the throne, the UUP is in reality simply fighting for its political survival. Some UUP members have contacted me to query why I never discuss …

Read more…

Beattie; “So I want to ask you out on a date, a date with democracy”

Doug Beattie is a UUP Candidate for Upper Bann  I want to ask you out on a date. There won’t be a fancy meal, no wine and no flowers – in fact on the face of it there will be nothing in the date for you but you will leave the date feeling good about yourself. This is a date with democracy and the Assembly election on 2nd March 2017. Already I can sense that many people have stopped reading, …

Read more…