Opinion poll puts Sinn Féin seven points ahead of DUP
SINN Féin remains on course to be Stormont's largest party with the DUP continuing to lag behind its main nationalist rival, according to the latest opinion poll.
The latest LucidTalk-Belfast Telegraph poll published today shows Sir Jeffrey Donaldson's party has increased its share of the vote since January but still trails Sinn Féin by seven percentage points.
Support for Michelle O'Neill's party increased by one percentage point to 26 per cent, while the DUP gained two points compared to January's corresponding poll, standing on 19 per cent.
Alliance remains on target to be Stormont's third largest party, increasing its share by two points to 16 per cent, while support for the Ulster Unionists has dropped by one point to 13 per cent – the party's lowest rating since Doug Beattie became leader last May.
The SDLP share remains unchanged on 11 per cent, while the TUV has fallen by three points since January to 9 per cent.
The Greens are down one point to 2 per cent, while People Before Profit has gained one point and stands at 2 per cent.
The survey of 3,281 people that took place earlier this month showed that 64 per cent of unionist and 62 per cent of nationalist respondents said it is ‘very important’ or ‘important’ that a party from their community emerges as the largest and takes the first minister's position.
Unionists are split down the middle on whether their parties should take the deputy position if Ms O’Neill becomes first minister - 45 per cent said they they shouldn’t and 44 per cent said they should.
Nationalists are unhappy that unionists would refuse to serve under a Sinn Féin first minister, with 90 per cent believing it to be “very unfair and unjustified”.