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The Ulster Unionist PartyCountry Before Party?$
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Thomas Hennessey, Máire Braniff, James W. McAuley, Jonathan Tonge, and Sophie A. Whiting

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780198794387

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: February 2019

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198794387.001.0001

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(p.1) Introduction
The Ulster Unionist Party

Thomas Hennessey

Máire Braniff

James W. McAuley

Jonathan Tonge

Sophie A. Whiting

Oxford University Press

The Ulster Unionist Party (UUP) was the dominant party in Northern Ireland from the 1920s until the end of the twentieth century. The twenty-first century has been much more of a struggle. The UUP was punished, not rewarded, by many in the Protestant Unionist British community for conceding too much to Irish nationalists in the 1998 Belfast/Good Friday Agreement. Those concerned about the deal defected to the more militant Democratic Unionist Party (DUP). The story of the UUP during the peace process and in the decades since the 1998 Agreement is examined in subsequent chapters. The volume draws upon the first-ever dataset on UUP members constructed by the authors to examine who belongs to the UUP, explore what they think of their party and others, and assess their views on the political changes which have seen their party come under pressure.

Keywords:   Ulster Unionist Party membership survey, Belfast Agreement, electoral change, peace process, Protestant

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