Quick Impressions of the NI Assembly Elections May 7, 2011Posted by Garibaldy in Democratic Unionist Party, Irish Republican Socialist Party, Northern Ireland, Socialist Party, Socialist Workers' Party, Workers' Party.
Results so far (early hours of Saturday morning but should be updated regularly).
A very good day for the DUP; a very bad one for the UUP and TUV.
SF has done well, SDLP not so well.
Alliance has done very well, including topping the poll in South Belfast.
DUP/SF increasingly dominant – around twice as many votes as their UUP/SDLP rivals.
Greens in with a real chance of a seat in North Down.
Dawn Purvis nearly certain to lose her seat, and Brian Ervine won’t retake it for the PUP.
Very good election for the PBPA, although I’m not sure there will be enough transfers for McCann to take the seat looking at how close the SDLP candidate ranked 7th is after the first count, and vote of lowest place SF and SDLP candidates. West Belfast result also eye-catching, more than doubling the vote to 1661 (4.8%). Please correct me if this is a mistake but looking at Belfast City Council’s list of candidates for west Belfast constituences, I don’t think the PBPA is standing in the local council elections in west Belfast, making it harder to judge to what those votes are overwhelmingly a core PBPA vote, or if some have been leant to them by éirígí/IRSP-type voters given that these parties aren’t standing in the Assembly election, but are standing in the council. I heard one estimate that put éirígí on around 1,000 (I think for both Upper and Lower Falls combined, but forgot to ask) although the council counting will be much slower than the Assembly.
Results in south and east Belfast for the left could have been better but the PBPA will think it did quite well in south Belfast. This is fairly worring given that they would have in the past been places the left would have looked to for growth.
The Socialist Party will probably be most pleased with its 384 votes in west Belfast (1.1%) out of the constituencies where it ran, while the south and east Belfast votes are fairly static.
The Workers’ Party vote in east and south Belfast is pretty static, but more than doubled in North Belfast (possibly the most sectarian electoral area in NI) to 332 (1%), its highest vote there since the early 1990s and had the highest number and percentage for more than a decade in west Belfast (586, 1.7%).
The total vote for the WP, PBPA, and SP is close to 7,500, (1.1% of the overall vote), with most of it going to the PBPA as expected. If you were to take Dawn Purvis’s 1,700-odd votes as primarily left votes (and there are reasons not to), about 1.4%. This gives a pretty sobering assessment of where the left stands in NI, especially when you remember the disproportionate percentage of the vote achieved by two candidates.
The council elections results are going to be more interesting still in light of these results, especially in Derry.