Sunday, 29 August 2010

Slow Death of The PUP

The UVF linked Progressive Unionist Party has over the last few months seen it's Heavyweights slowly drift away from the Party.

First Dawn Purvis the Leader and the only PUP Assembly member left following the killing of Bobby Moffett on the Shankhill Road in Belfast, which was blamed on the UVF. Now David Rose who is a member of the Policing Board has also left after 'Reflection' following the murder and citing that the party was drifting in the direction of Being Conservative.

The PUP is not one of the major players in the Northern Irish Political Landscape, finding most of their support in Belfast among working class voters. However this slow bleed of the Party's heavyweights presents an opportunity for one of the Main UK Parties.

The PUP are supposed to be a Left/centre-Left party but if it is true that they are drifting to the right Labour are being presented with a potential seat in the Assembly. Dawn Purvis still holds her seat and considering the fact she was the leader of a party at one point it is possible she shall retain her seat next year.

If she can be convinced to sign up with Labour it could be viewed as a huge coup for Labour in gaining seats ahead of the Tories whose main allies, the UUP, are running a leadership election with two candidates both expressing anti-Link views effectively killing the UCUNF experiment on the eve of the Link-ups first assembly election.

Though Labour would only have one seat it would provide them with an Experienced Northern Irish politician in a position outside the Executive which would give them a greater platform to try and create a more Labour Friendly Northern Ireland come the Next General Election.

One aspect labour would have consider is the direction their new leader takes them in, a centre-left Blairite catch all labour would face problems from not only Unionism, which is neither left or right, Nationalists, who have socialist DNA but also Fianna Fail, a centre left catch all party just starting to set up shop as well.

A Left Labour may be able to find a niche in Belfast and a deal with the SDLP could put extra pressure on Sinn Fein and the DUP with a party who have clout in both Northern Ireland and the UK as a whole.

As always this is speculation and theory not solid fact

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