Friday, April 30

The pros and cons of tatical voting in this election in the north of Ireland.

Jim Gibney has been in the Irish News lately writing about tatical voting. He urges republicans in south Belfast to vote for Alasdair McDonnell of the SDLP saying it is better for nationalism overall to vote for the SDLP candidate rather than not vote and allow in a unionist candidate.

But I fear his predictions are based on very grand hopes that Sinn Fein cannot realise. According to Gibney Republicans should vote for the SDLP candidate as it is better for nationalism in achieving their ideal of a united Ireland to have McDonnell elected rather than a unionist candidate.

Gibney maintains that tatical voting is part of the landscape in the six counties and has been used before by various others with success, and that if done this time round it could result in nationalists holding nine out of the eighteen Westminister seats.
But this thinking of Gibneys and of Sinn Fein in removing Alex Maskey from the race is based on lifting Fermanagh and south Tyrone, and north Belfast seats and one must ask how realistic that goal is. Fermanagh and south Tyrone is much too close to call, the fate of that seat could literally lie with the weather and voter turn out. North Belfast is much more difficult to predict. Gibney claims that if Kelly is elected he will be one of three nationalist MP's out of four constituencies.  
I feel Gibney is much too optimistic and since when was politics here down to making Sinn Fein the biggest party? If Kelly was to become the third of four MP's for Belfast that would mean this city would have next to no representation at Westminister, we'd simply have more MP's doing nothing.
It is a matter of record that Sinn Voters have very little money, they are in the main working class people, people who would have next to no representation at Westminister in the mouth of savage cuts.

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