Murphy retains his Westminster seat
May 11, 2010
By Brónagh Murphy
Sinn Féin’s Conor Murphy has retained his MP’s seat for Newry and Armagh, topping the poll with 18,857 votes at Thursday’s Westminster election.
The Regional Development Minister was re-elected to a second term with a comfortable majority of more than eight thousand votes over his nearest rival, Dominic Bradley of the SDLP, who received 10,526 votes.
Other candidates in the constituency were Danny Kennedy, Ulster Conservatives and Unionists New Force polled 8,558 votes; William Irwin, DUP – 5,764; Independent William Frazer – 656, and Andrew Muir, Alliance Party – 545.
Following his victory, Mr Murphy said he now wishes to focus on developing a comprehensive response to the economic crisis, adding that his sizeable return ‘proved beyond all doubt’ that the people of Newry and Armagh endorse the ongoing peace process and the strategy that Sinn Féin is following.
“I am delighted with this election result,” Mr Murphy said.
“Not only in my own constituency, but right across the north Sinn Féin has polled extremely well. The result in Fermanagh/South Tyrone is an emphatic victory for Michelle Gildernew over Unionist and Tory bigotry and flawed leadership from the SDLP. This is a clear endorsement of our party’s direction and the work that our elected representatives and activists do on the ground.
“It also sends a clear message to those who are trying to detract from the current process,” he added.
“I am honoured to be mandated to continue to represent the interests of all of the people in this constituency for another Westminster term and I assure the people of Newry and Armagh that our constituency offices are open to all in need of our assistance.”
In the South Down constituency Margaret Ritchie held on to the seat for the SDLP, vacated by retired MP Eddie McGrady.
The Social Development Minister and her party’s leader, Ms Ritchie, polled a total of 20,648 votes, well ahead of Education Minister, Caitriona Ruane with 12,236.
Other candidates in this constituency were Jim Wells of the DUP who received 3,645 votes, John McCallister, Ulster Conservatives and Unionists New Force – 3,093, Ivor McConnell, TUV – 1,506, Cadogan Enright, Greens – 901, and David Griffin, Alliance Party – 560.