Belfast Telegraph

DUP team will get best deal for electorate

Ulster is well down list of Tory priorities, writes DUP MP David Simpson

In the 1990 Upper Bann by-election, the Conservative Party officially contested its first election in Northern Ireland.

On that occasion their candidate received 3% of the vote.

In last year's Province-wide European election, the Northern Ireland Conservative candidate received just 0.7%.

David Cameron's whistle-stop visit to Northern Ireland epitomises why the Conservative Party has never had much success here.

The fly-in and fly-out attitude has always characterised where our constituencies fit in their list of priorities.

The Prime Minister and his wife Samantha swept into Belfast City Airport, attended one event in east Belfast, conducted a few media interviews in the airport and then boarded their plane again. Exclude time spent at the airport and the entire visit to Northern Ireland could probably have been completed faster than you could watch a Game of Thrones episode.

While I commend the Conservatives for standing in every part of the United Kingdom, Northern Ireland constituencies quite rightly trust and favour a Northern Ireland party to be their voice in London. However, as a unionist, I believe anyone living in the United Kingdom should be free to put their policies before the electorate anywhere in the United Kingdom.

A Conservative Party candidate will stand against me in Upper Bann. With this General Election being the closest in a generation, Northern Ireland's seats could hold real influence in the next Parliament.

That's why we have been telling people on the doorsteps, the more votes we have, the more seats we will have and the more influence Northern Ireland will have in the corridors of power.

David Cameron's flying visit will remind people where Northern Ireland sits in his list of priorities and why it's important to have a strong team of DUP MPs to stand up for Northern Ireland. A strong and united DUP team will work to get the best deal for the people we represent.

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