And so it came to pass that the imperial progress of the Empress Theresa came up short of the win line, leaving the Tories with 318 seats, and very few other parties willing to give them the time of day, let alone come to any arrangement on forming a Government. Undeterred, Ms May went to the Palace, confirmed to Brenda that she would carry on as Prime Minister, and declared herself to be strong and stable after all.
There was, though, as Captain Blackadder might have observed, only one thing wrong with this idea - it was bollocks. Not all Tories are hardline Brexiteers. Not all were of favourable view on the election manifesto which caused the party so much grief on the doorstep. Many remain unhappy at the sheer negativity of the campaign, and the shameless sucking up to the press barons.
Some Tories will, additionally, be seriously unhappy at Ms May’s solution for getting The Blue Team over that win line: an arrangement with the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP). Northern Irish politics has become totally polarised in this General Election: no seats for the Official Unionists or SDLP, but ten for the DUP and seven for Sinn Féin. A working arrangement with the DUP would see the Tories’ electoral strength increased to 328.
Given Sinn Féin are abstentionists, that gives a majority of 14. It’s vulnerable to a few by-election losses, and Zelo Street believes that some unexpected and unwelcome ones may be just over the horizon. It allows the Government to function and the Brexit negotiations to get going. But at what price? What kind of outfit is the DUP?
The answer is that, as an item in The Irish News titled “DUP has been criticised for loyalist links” tells, “The DUP party has been criticised in the past for sharing platforms with representatives of loyalist paramilitaries … In 1996, former MP Rev William McCrea stood at a Portadown rally alongside LVF leader Billy Wright … The ruthless paramilitary group, which split from the UVF in 1996, was responsible for high-profile murders including the killing of Catholic taxi driver Michael McGoldrick”. But one Tory is happy.
Dan, Dan The Oratory Man happily Tweeted “The @duponline are indeed our friends and allies. The IRA weren't. See the difference?” Rachael Ferguson, for one, was unimpressed: “The UDA killed my friend in front of me as a teenager. But I guess they are the 'right' kind of terrorists”. What was that about not talking to terrorists and their apologists? Where is the media outrage? And the DUP have other, er, baggage.
Anti-abortion, against same-sex marriage, climate change denial, homophobic, Islamophobic, not to forget that Irish News roll-call: “The father of the DUP's Emma Little Pengelly, who has just won the South Belfast seat, is Noel Little, a Co Armagh loyalist and founder of Ulster Resistance … Little was one of three men arrested in Paris in 1989 in connection with a plot to exchange a missile stolen from Shorts for South African guns”.
And Daniel Hannan thinks this crowd “are indeed our friends and allies”. With friends and allies like the DUP, the Tories are in need of no enemies. And now they are being propped up by a bunch of terror sympathisers. But for some reason, the press will probably look the other way. Daniel Hannan is a clown. But you probably knew that anyway.
"friends and allies" - is he confirming what has been believed for 43 years?? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dublin_and_Monaghan_bombings
I'm surprised that Sinn Féin hasn't given up its isolationist stance for once. It surely can't be happy having no influence when the DUP will.
I bet this whole election saga is giving the CIA Nazis nightmares.
You can just imagine the Brit desk at Langley: "Hey Jarn, dump the Ukraine destabilisin' for chrissakes. I got me a REAL prarblum with this bearded commie in Limeyland. We can do lernch after"......the poor bastard must be going swivel eyed as the prarblums pile up.
Oh how we larfed.
Listening to Irish radio today was quite entertaining. They found the idea of the DUP pulling Theresa's and the rest of the UK's strings, while Sinn Fein stand on the side-lines incandescent with rage hilarious. Highly respected commentators in RTE are wondering if SF will actually decide to go to Westminster.
For being allowed, as it were, into the mainstream political process, Sinn Fein really needs to step up to the plate, swallow a lot of pride, hard I know, and get their arses to Westminster. The thought of the DUP having any influence whatsoever is appalling. What have they demanded from Calamity May in exchange for propping up her tatty regime? Stricter abortion laws, climate denial/ creationism on school curriculum, end to same-sex marriage, return of Section 28?
Sinn Fein don't need to be in Westminster. The party leaders can happily extert their influence from across the Irish Sea.
I can remember a time not long ago when the Conservatives had only a couple of seats in Scotland and were complaining about the undue influence of SNP MPs on Westminster when many matters were devolved to the Scottish Parliament. Remember the cries of "English votes for English laws"? And so it came to pass that after the 2015 General Election the Westminster standing orders were amended to cover this, and I presume that change also covered NI MPs (until the NI Assembly collapses and direct rule is resumed).
Sinn Féin need to chose the right moment. They don't need to move until something that could affect their voters is looming. For now it would be sensible to let the DUP take the media attention and let the people of Britain understand who they are and what they stand for (and who they knew in the past). Give it a few months and either the Conservatives will have second thoughts or Sinn Féin turning up won't seem so negative!
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