Brenda Hale leads DUP field as most likely runner in Lagan Valley 

 A former MLA who lambasted the “political assassination” of Arlene Foster and questioned the DUP’s direction under Edwin Poots has emerged as the likely front-runner to be its candidate in a future Lagan Valley by-election.

arty sources said that Brenda Hale was its best chance of seeing off what will be a strong challenge from the runner-up at the last Westminster election, Alliance’s Sorcha Eastwood.

If Sir Jeffrey Donaldson keeps his pledge to step down as a MP in the autumn to return to the Assembly and take up the role of First Minister, a by-election will be triggered.

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