Democratic National Alliance (Bahamas)
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The Democratic National Alliance (DNA) is a political party in the Commonwealth of the Bahamas which was formed in 2011. The party is currently led by Branville McCartney, who is the former Member of Parliament (MP) for the Bamboo Town constituency and Minister of Immigration. The party lies to the right of the Bahamian political spectrum. The party largely stands against illegal immigration, and proposes wide-ranging tax and economic reforms.
The party was formed when then Minister Branville McCartney left the Ingraham administration in 2011 in protest of a string of flawed policy and the lack of opportunity for members of the party to express their discontent with the direction of the nation and of the Free National Movement.
2012 General Election
The leader of the DNA challenged then Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham and Progressive Liberal Party leader Perry Christie to a series of debates across the country. Ingraham denied, while Christie agreed to the debates, though none materialized. During the May General Election, the DNA garnered 8.5% of the popular vote, but lost their one seat in Parliament (Bamboo Town) to PLP candidate Renward Wells. The PLP won the general election, and Ingraham subsequently resigned as Free National Movement leader. Ingraham was replaced as party chief by former Health Minister, Hubert Minnis.
Aftermath of 2012
The DNA, often referred to as the Alliance is considered the Bahamas's fastest growing party. In surveys done by Public Domain Polling in 2014, it was found that DNA leader Branville McCartney was the most well liked Bahamian political figure.
In December, 2016, seven of the ten FNM House Members executed a vote of no confidence in then Opposition Leader, Hubert Minnis. The seven members, were disdainfully called "rebels" by Minnis, who still leads the FNM as a political party. After the seven members wrote a letter to the Governor General on the matter, Long Island House Member Loretta Butler-Turner was named the new Opposition Leader. This is the first time that a no-confidence vote has been staged in the Bahamas −either against a Prime Minister or Opposition Leader. It also marks the first time that a woman, a Long Islander, or a person not leading the political party of which they are a member, is charged to be Leader of the Opposition. Subsequent to her naming as Leader of the Official Opposition, FNM House Member, Loretta Butler-Turner, named DNA leader Branville McCartney as Leader of Opposition Business in the Bahamas Senate. This is the first time in which the DNA has been named to the upper chamber, and is the first time in which a politician from one party has appointed a member of a contrary party to sit in the Bahamas Senate. Both Turner and McCartney, in a joint DNA-FNM Press Conference, affirmed that uniting the opposition was the best plan for outdoing the PLP in the impending elections scheduled for 2017. This comes months after discussions between opposition parties over coalition formation in advance of the 2017 elections.