Update and prediction on North Down election

My original post suggested that the DUP could be wiped out and revert to the 1998 Assembly when the party failed to win a seat in North Down. Based on the opinion polls this is still a possibility but not likely.

The North Down campaign was unusually lively, and I was canvassed by all the main parties and the Independent Ray McKimm. I think he will do well particularly he has run a very active campaign and as I pointed out in my original post North Down likes Independents and mavericks and Ray has a strong record of working with local groups and getting things done in Bangor.

I see no reason to change my initial prediction that Alex Easton and one Alliance and one UUP candidate will get elected to the first 3 seats and the other two seats will go to either DUP, Greens, second Alliance or second UUP.

If as I pointed out North Down breaks as normal this will result in 3 unionists and 2 non unionists. Therefore, if Easton and one UUP candidate are successful the DUP will lose one of their two seats. The third unionist seat will probably go to the DUP unless they do even worse than the polls suggest, and it could be won by a surging Alliance party or a revitalised UUP.

The 2 non unionist seats would seem to be straightforward as Alliance will win one and the final seat will be between the Greens and the second Alliance candidate

. I find it almost impossible to  predict as the Green have a strong base in North Down since I first won this seat in 2007 and have run a very good campaign. On the other hand, Alliance is on a surge throughout Northern Ireland and have the North Down MP. I have no doubt Alliance will gain a considerable number of seats, but I cannot decide whether North Down will be one of them.

After 60 years of involvement in North Down elections it is strange to stand aside and observe. My original predictions and discussion of candidates see http://brianawilson.com/a-dup-wipeout-in-north-down/

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