SINN FEIN PRIMO PARTITO DEL NORD
Le ultime elezioni europee hanno segnato per la prima volta la vittoria di un partito nazionalista o repubblicano alle elezioni.
Il Sinn Fein porta al trionfo Bairbre de Brún, segnando così il tracollo del DUP che ha subito un drastico calo nelle preferenze, passando dal 51,72% di 5 anni fa all’attuale 42,81%.
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De Brún elected as SF tops poll (Irish Times)
Sinn Féin has topped the poll in Northern Ireland’s European elections after a collapse in support for the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP).
It is the first time a republican or nationalist party has secured the largest share of the vote in a Northern Ireland election.
Sinn Féin’s Bairbre de Brún polled 126,184 votes and was elected on the first count. But the DUP candidate Diane Dodds saw support for her party fall from 175,761 votes at the last European election to 88,346 votes.
Just 42.81 per cent of the electorate turned out in the North compared to 51.72 per cent five years ago. Only three of the 18 Westminster constituencies recorded a turnout figure of 50 per cent or better.
Counting began in Belfast this morning and it is expected that the final results will be among the last seats to be declared anywhere in the EU.
The highest turnout totals were seen in nationalist areas, particularly those west of the Bann.
Ms de Brún’s surplus and those of the smaller parties will prove crucial to the fortunes of SDLP candidate Alban Maginness, who is fighting to retain the seat held by John Hume from 1979 until 2004.
The unionist vote has been divided among three candidates in a manner not widely anticipated at the outset of the campaign.
The showing of Traditional Unionist Voice (TUV) leader Jim Allister will rattle his erstwhile colleagues in the DUP since he is seen as the prime reason for the drop in support for Ms Dodds.
She is still expected to be elected for the DUP, but the fate of the third seat remains wide open.