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One in nine believe Catholics would vote DUP

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One in nine people believe that pro-Union Catholics will vote for the DUP, an online poll has found

So far, more than 900 people have responded to the survey on the News Letter website, which examines Peter Robinson’s claim that the majority of Catholics are happy with the Union and his attempt to attract Catholic votes.

According to the poll, only 118 people [13 per cent] agreed that Catholics who want to maintain the strong links to mainland GB will vote for the biggest pro-Union party in Northern Ireland.

In contrast, 410 people “disagreed entirely” with the DUP leader’s assertion, and said they believed most Catholics would vote for a united Ireland.

A further 398, said that while Catholics may be happy to remain citizens of the UK, they agreed that “it will take more work for the DUP to translate that view into votes for their party”.

Speaking at last week’s DUP party conference, the First Minister again set out his desire to attract Catholic voters to the DUP, arguing that the “left” policies of the SDLP and “far left” policies of Sinn Fein “leave many Catholics effectively disenfranchised”.

He also dismissed republicans’ call for a border poll.

“One of the most bizarre developments in recent times has been the Sinn Fein call for a Border Poll,” he said.

“Now, I know opinion polls are not a perfect gauge of public opinion, but when the last one showed that fewer than 10 per cent want a united Ireland now, republicans really should take the hint.

“Republicans asking for a border poll makes turkeys voting for Christmas look like a carefully considered strategy.”

And in recent days Mr Robinson has claimed nationalism is “in crisis” with more Catholics defining themselves as Northern Irish.

Mr Robinson, addressing a South Antrim party dinner on Saturday night, said the fastest growing section of society is that which classifies itself as “other”.

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