Poll has Colum Eastwood marginally ahead in race for third European seat
COLUM Eastwood is marginally ahead in the race to win the third seat in the European election, according to a new poll.
There are 11 candidates vying for seats in Northern Ireland with sitting MEPs Martina Anderson from Sinn Féin and the DUP's Diane Dodds expected to win a seat apiece.
A LucidTalk poll published by The Times predicted that the SDLP's Colum Eastwood would receive more first preference votes than the UUP and Alliance in the battle for the final seat.
It suggested Mr Eastwood would win 11.8 per cent of the first preferences ahead of the UUP's Danny Kennedy on 10.6 per cent and Naomi Long of Alliance on 10.2 per cent.
However, it also found 6.7 per cent said they were unsure who they would vote for, but that they would vote.
Much will also depend on where second preferences go.
Those voting for Ms Anderson on first preference favoured Ms Long as second, with the poll showing that 42 per cent of second preferences going to the Alliance leader. Mr Eastwood would receive 23.9 per cent of the second preferences from Ms Anderson.
The poll also suggested that the TUV's Jim Allister would receive more second preferences than the UUP from those voting number one for the DUP.