I've decided to include a map with this post; as it is a short post, and there may be some confusion given some things I say about specific seats.
In the upper left is my guide to which community makes up a majority in each, and in the upper right is a county map from Wikipedia. The county map helps explain the context behind many of the names.
A reminder that the City and County of Derry/Londonderry has a name controversy, with Unionists calling it Londonderry and Nationalists calling it Derry. Since the City has a Nationalist majority, while the remainder of the County has a Unionist majority, I lean towards calling it the City of Derry, in County Londonderry.
Derry is located in the Foyle constituency. Foyle is the river the splits the city in two, and is used to avoid naming controversies over the pick of a name.
Northern Ireland has a population of 1,868,700. This compares to Manitoba at 1,278,000; South Australia at 1,706,500, and West Virginia at 1,831,102.
Belfast is the largest city and has a mixed Unionist/Nationalist demographic. It has 333,000 people.
Derry is next largest with 85,000.
Finding the 3rd largest is not easy. Local government creates massive municipalities in terms of size, and population figures from within these areas are not always clear. However, I think I've determined the population of various centres using data from ward population.
55,000 Bangor (North Down)
41,000 Newtownabbey (split between Belfast North, South Antrim, and East Antrim)
34,000 Lisburn (Lagan Valley)
All three are effective 'suburbs' of Belfast, and heavily Unionist. At the municipal level, there is a grand total of one Nationalist councillor in these three towns.
I've created another map showing candidates
I've tried to divide up the 22 Independent candidates into smaller groups to help examine them.
2 are unknown, I've not been able to find where they stand on the issues.
3 are self-admitted progressives, and 2 more seem to have progressive stances on the issues. None of them are clearly unionist or nationalist.
2 are concerned mothers who have faced major health issues in their family
3 are unionists, including one who was tossed from the DUP. This is the only group with Incumbents, in this case, 2.
4 are nationalists, including one who left SF.
And 3 are unique. West Tyrone as a lady who thinks God wants her to hate on gays, North Down has a man who was arrested for smoking in council chambers (both these candidates have run before and finished last) and South Down has a former alliance candidate who has done some strange things, but is now seeking treatment for mental illness.
I have two posts that I'm working on at this time, one expanding on the New Left vs New Right, and another looking at my own personal proposals for Northern Ireland.
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