This is probably the most interesting European election in Northern Ireland since 1979 (though that is not saying much). Given the strength of their respective parties in recent contests, Diane Dodds for the DUP and Bairbre de Brún of Sinn Féin must be considered very likely to retain their parties' seats. The interesting questions are:
- will Jim Allister erode enough of his former party's vote to allow de Brún to top the poll?
- will he do well enough to overtake Nicholson for the third seat? And
- will the Unionist vote be sufficiently splintered or demoralised that Maginness overtakes the second-placed Unionist and wins the third seat for the SDLP?
Incidentally this means that Northern Ireland will probably end up with three eurosceptic MEPs. I don't have opinion poll figures to hand re the degree of popular euroscepticism in the province but I doubt that it is anywhere near 75%, let alone 100%.
Those of you voting in any part of the UK may find this site of interest / amusement.