Election Watch 1

Whilst the rest of the UK will watch the first presidential, sorry, party leaders' debate tomorrow evening, I'll be doing something more useful... like banging my head off a brick wall... Because it doesn't matter who we vote for here in Northern Ireland... the government will still get in... and whether it is Labour, Tory or (lets indulge in fantasy here) LibDem we won't have a hand in it... Well, that would normally be the case... but this time round the Tories have tied themselves to the previously sinking ship that is the UUP...
There were historic links between the Unionists and Conservatives so this is not entirely without precedent... but it has served to make my personal electoral choice much more complicated... You see I tend towards the left on the electoral map (you'd never guess) and although I feel enormously let down by the "New" Labour government, and (worryingly) have found myself agreeing (occasionally) with some of the things being said by the Conservatives recently (although they have been saying mutually contradictory things in order to broaden their appeal so perhaps that's not so surprising), the statistical likelihood of me ever voting Tory is vanishingly small... But I am also not too enamoured with my current MP... who also happens to be the First Minister of the NI Assembly and leader of the DUP. And the only candidate likely to challenge his almost unassailable majority in this constituency is the UUP candidate... the solicitor, former Ireland rugby international, and active campaigner on community relations, Trevor Ringland...
So who do I vote for? Tory Trevor or Mr Robinson... Certainly the battle between them is hotting up as evidenced by a billboard and this related blog post that I read this morning...
This murky mess is complicated even further by the fact that the DUP and UUP (and by extension their Tory partners) in Fermanagh are both standing back to allow an agreed independent unionist candidate a free run to try to unseat the current Sinn Fein MP... This led to accusations that the Tories were backing old fashioned sectarian politics. But the Conservatives were quick to point out that Sinn Fein abstain from attending parliament in Westminster, therefore they felt at liberty to arrange an electoral pact there, whilst they have not agreed to do the same to unseat the SDLP's Alasdair MacDonnell in South Belfast.
But anyway... as I continue to wrestle with my dilemma I was amused to be pointed in the direction of this 2006 hatchet job on David "Blair-lite" Cameron, by Scrabo Power... Its only a few minutes long and is infinitely more entertaining than tomorrow night's debate will be...



Comments

Jonathan Rea said…
Thanks! A wry but hearty laugh at the end of a long day.

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