Protestant Unionist Party
The Protestant Unionist Party (PUP) was a unionist political party
Political party
A political party is a political organization that typically seeks to influence government policy, usually by nominating their own candidates and trying to seat them in political office. Parties participate in electoral campaigns, educational outreach or protest actions...

 operating in Northern Ireland
Northern Ireland
Northern Ireland is one of the four countries of the United Kingdom. Situated in the north-east of the island of Ireland, it shares a border with the Republic of Ireland to the south and west...

 from 1966 to 1971. It was set up by Ian Paisley
Ian Paisley
Ian Richard Kyle Paisley, Baron Bannside, PC is a politician and church minister in Northern Ireland. As the leader of the Democratic Unionist Party , he and Sinn Féin's Martin McGuinness were elected First Minister and deputy First Minister respectively on 8 May 2007.In addition to co-founding...

, and was the forerunner of the modern Democratic Unionist Party
Democratic Unionist Party
The Democratic Unionist Party is the larger of the two main unionist political parties in Northern Ireland. Founded by Ian Paisley and currently led by Peter Robinson, it is currently the largest party in the Northern Ireland Assembly and the fourth-largest party in the House of Commons of the...

 (DUP) and emerged from the Ulster Protestant Action
Ulster Protestant Action
Ulster Protestant Action was an loyalist and Protestant fundamentalist vigilante group in Northern Ireland.The group was founded at a special meeting at the Ulster Unionist Party's offices in Glengall Street, Belfast, in 1956. Among the attendees were many loyalists who were to become major...

 (UPA) movement.

The UPA had two councillors elected, and in 1967 both were re-elected as PUP candidates. They stood six candidates against the more moderate Ulster Unionist Party
Ulster Unionist Party
The Ulster Unionist Party – sometimes referred to as the Official Unionist Party or, in a historic sense, simply the Unionist Party – is the more moderate of the two main unionist political parties in Northern Ireland...

 members of the Stormont
Parliament of Northern Ireland
The Parliament of Northern Ireland was the home rule legislature of Northern Ireland, created under the Government of Ireland Act 1920, which sat from 7 June 1921 to 30 March 1972, when it was suspended...

 parliament in the 1969 election
Northern Ireland general election, 1969

 and polled over 20,000 votes.

When Terence O'Neill
Terence O'Neill
Terence Marne O'Neill, Baron O'Neill of the Maine, PC was the fourth Prime Minister of Northern Ireland and leader of the Ulster Unionist Party...

 (the then Northern Irish Prime Minister
Prime minister
A prime minister is the most senior minister of cabinet in the executive branch of government in a parliamentary system. In many systems, the prime minister selects and may dismiss other members of the cabinet, and allocates posts to members within the government. In most systems, the prime...

) stood down from Stormont in 1970 along with one of his colleagues, the PUP nominated candidates for the two vacant seats (Ian Paisley and William Beattie, PUP leader and deputy respectively). Both were elected to Stormont and in that year's general election
United Kingdom general election, 1970
The United Kingdom general election of 1970 was held on 18 June 1970, and resulted in a surprise victory for the Conservative Party under leader Edward Heath, who defeated the Labour Party under Harold Wilson. The election also saw the Liberal Party and its new leader Jeremy Thorpe lose half their...

, Paisley was elected to represent Antrim North in Westminster.

The PUP campaigned for the retention of the Union, preferential treatment for Protestants in employment, and for total freedom for Orange
Orange Institution
The Orange Institution is a Protestant fraternal organisation based mainly in Northern Ireland and Scotland, though it has lodges throughout the Commonwealth and United States. The Institution was founded in 1796 near the village of Loughgall in County Armagh, Ireland...

 parades. The PUP was wound up in 1971 and re-emerged as the DUP in October of that year.

Later in the 1987 general election
United Kingdom general election, 1987
The United Kingdom general election of 1987 was held on 11 June 1987, to elect 650 members to the British House of Commons. The election was the third consecutive election victory for the Conservative Party under the leadership of Margaret Thatcher, who became the first Prime Minister since the 2nd...

, George Seawright
George Seawright
George Seawright was a controversial unionist politician in Northern Ireland who was assassinated by the Irish People's Liberation Organisation during the Troubles.-Early life:...

, a Scottish-born former DUP candidate who was later assassinated by the Irish People's Liberation Organisation
Irish People's Liberation Organisation
The Irish People's Liberation Organisation was a small Irish republican paramilitary organization which was formed in 1986 by disaffected and expelled members of the Irish National Liberation Army whose factions coalesced in the aftermath of the supergrass trials...

(IPLO), defied an official pact between the Unionist parties and revived the Protestant Unionist label for his candidature.
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