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Thursday, May 18, 2006


Boundary Commission Proposals Out

The latest proposals for Northern Irelands' parliamentary constituencies have been announced by the Boundary commission and reported on by the BBC.

I'm no Nicholas Whyte but a few points arise:

1- the retreat from any radical readjustment of East Antrim. UUP sources had been hoping for tactical voting in the proposed "Coast and Glens" seat to remove Sammy Wilson.

2- the extension of the Belfast seats. Given the RPA surely it makes sense to have Belfast City Councils' boundaries coterminous with those of the four parliamentary seats?

3- the retention of 18 seats. The blunt answer to the West Lothian Question has been a reduction in Scottish representation at Westminster. Should devolution ever work here will a similar reduction be proposed for NI? With MLAs returned for parliamentary constituencies could this have a knock-on effect at Stormont?

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