Friday 29 January 2010

Dreary steeples again

It just gets worse and worse for the unionists and their botched attempts at 'unity':

"Conservative Northern Ireland spokesman Owen Paterson has said he is seeking an urgent meeting with Ulster Unionist leader Sir Reg Empey. It follows revelations the Orange Order convened secret unity talks between the DUP and UUP in early December.

The parties discussed the possibility of electoral pacts and forming a unionist bloc at Stormont. However, the talks did not involve the Tories, the Ulster Unionist Party's current election partner.

Mr Paterson said he knew nothing about the meeting which was exposed by the BBC's Hearts and Minds, and would not comment any further until he had talked with Sir Reg."
The BBC goes on to say that:

"Some in Belfast think that the Conservative-UUP pact is now effectively dead, and that Conservative leader David Cameron will be forced to announce its demise within the next few days."
Jeffrey Peel, who was always vocally opposed to the UCUNF project commented that:

"… the Conservative UUP relationship could not survive this. Sir Reg's words about establishing non-sectarian politics here ring very hollow indeed when, in the course of supposedly doing a deal with the Conservatives, he was having tri-partite meetings with the Orange Order and DUP."
The question in all this is who really was the fool. Were the UUP foolish to think that the Tories really cared about them, as opposed to just about gaining power in London, or were the Tories foolish to think that the UUP had actually changed? At the time of the UCUNF non-merger there were many voices raised in warning, but none were heeded. Now it seems that the dreary steeples are emerging once again.


bangordub said...

Now that Unionism has been exposed for what it really is, what's the chances of a cathartic change in the unionist electorate?

Anonymous said...

There have to be some moderate non sectarian unionist disgusted by all of this. Why do we not hear from them?

Dazzler said...

Extract from letter to NI Conservatives from Tim Lewis…
The Conservative Party position across the United Kingdom is unequivocal: there will be no electoral arrangement in Northern Ireland with any Party other than the Ulster Unionist Party with 18 General Election candidates standing as Conservatives and Unionists as standard bearers for change and normal politics in a shared future. Furthermore we will not remain in alliance with any Party that attempts to enter an electoral deal with any other Party for an Assembly or a Westminster Election.

So if unionists form an agreement in the next two elections. (eg DUP standing down in FST and SB in the british general election and in return the UUP agreeing to form a coalition with the DUP in the next assembly election to save the DUP from annilation and to prevent SF holding the office of first minister) the Tories will not go ahead with their link up with the UUP. We shall see.

Anonymous said...

As an outsider I must say the politics in N.I. are like something out of Alice in wonderland.

Wiz said...

That's because it is a failed political entity Anon. Partition was a disaster.