Archive | February, 2016

Bowman

Final words from John Bowman on #ge16

A tradition in Irish election broadcasts is the final thoughts of broadcaster, John Bowman. Since there will be a lot of speculation over the coming days, here is his final analysis of Election 2016; To say this election is unique goes without saying. It’s historic, it’s seismic, it’s awesome in its consequences and as the more…

UUP15 set

Maurice Devenney has second thoughts about the UUP

On Friday, we were told another defector, former DUP MLA, Maurice Devenney had joined the UUP as Mike Nesbitt said; I am particularly pleased to welcome Maurice into the Ulster Unionist Party, given his standing in the community, his lengthy record of service for the people, and his obvious appetite for more. “Maurice joins an ever-lengthening more…

David Ford - February 2016 - looking forward

Interview with David Ford: “don’t bother summoning the men in grey suits, just tell me”

TELL ME when it’s time to go says Alliance leader David Ford. In this interview with Slugger he talks about Alliance’s electoral appeal, new parties in NI, switching to use council areas for Assembly constituencies, taking Executive meetings out on the road, the balance of funding between prison and community/probation services, joined up working across more…

#GE16 – FG *will* win more seats than FF…

Another dramatic Irish election, with the exit polls proving to have underestimated the substantial fall in support for the government parties. Fianna Fáil have lurched back to within 1.2% of Fine Gael as largest party, 24.35% to 25.52%, and overnight the two were both on 28 seats. That’s the sort of margin where you can more…

Leinsterhouse

An Mailleach’s guide to what comes after the deadlock of #GE16…?

FUMBLING INTO THE DARK: There are no time limits set out as to how long it should be before we give up and go to the polls again. This is uncharted territory – with no legal guide – so, politics trumps everything. Dr. Eoin O’Malley of Dublin City University lays out what happens next.

trafalgar square

The CND and the movement trying to stop Trident’s renewal

I took a break today from RTÉ’s coverage of the general election to head down to Trafalgar Square and check out the CND’s #StopTrident rally. Here’s my report. I’m an instinctual multilateralist, but last night I had pints with a friend who passionately believes the UK should give up its nuclear weapons. So today, after more…

UUP MP’s testimonal “crossed the line on the independence of the court”

A testimonal provided by former UUP leader, and current MP for Fermanagh & South Tyrone, Tom Elliot, in the case of a former soldier who was caught driving while disqualified, has been criticised by a Northern Ireland District Judge, John Meehan, for having “crossed the line on the independence of the court”.  As the BBC reports [added emphasis more…

000bdb20-642

#GE16 Exit Polls show Government parties set for a beating

Well it’s all over and we are just waiting for the vote to be counted but two exit polls make terrible reading for the government and should make Fianna Fail and Sinn Fein happy. RTE Irish Times/MRBI Some takeaways If true this is Enda Kenny’s worst ever General Election performance as leader, he scored 27.1% more…

#GE16 – ROUNDING UP THE REST – MUNSTER

Clare This constituency remains untouched by the Constituency Commission. Currently there are two Fine Gael TDs, one Labour TD and one from Fianna Fáil. Geographically the four incumbents are distributed one from the west, one from Ennis and two from the east which reflects the population distribution of the county. This county has traditionally been more…

EUDebateNI legal 3x3

The Legal Implications of Brexit: mechanics, criminal repercussions, and perhaps enhanced protection of rights #EUDebateNI

Lawyers from across Ireland gathered in Belfast for a conference examining the Legal Implications of Brexit. The complexities of unpicking the UK from the EU were unearthed and discussed, including smuggling, extradition, and the impact on human rights protects. (The Attorney General reckons that Brexit would enhance the protection of fundamental rights and freedoms.)

McRayRiver

Where the River Bends – Considering Forgiveness in the Lives of Prisoners by Michael McRay, Book Review

What do we do with uncomfortable stories? Uncomfortable stories about ourselves? Uncomfortable stories about our ‘enemies’ or rivals? Or uncomfortable stories about people we may never think about at all – like prisoners. In Where the River Bends: Considering Forgiveness in the Lives of Prisoners (Cascade Books, 2016), Michael McRay takes us behind the walls more…

sterling and euros

…but they’ll never take our EU membership?

The debate on the United Kingdom’s membership of the European Union has properly begun.  In these early days of the debate David Cameron and Nicola Sturgeon have made an unusual partnership to try and add a Scottish question to the European one.  The UUP is playing a game of public angst with the Scottish claims more…

Dublin_Flag

#GE16 ROUNDING UP THE REST – DUBLIN

Dublin Fingal This 5 seat constituency replaced the old Dublin North. It is augmented by the addition of over 17,000 people from Swords who were formerly in Dublin West. Clare Daly who is closely associated with Wexford TD Mick Wallace and running under his ‘Independents for Change’ banner is a safe bet to be the more…

#GE16 ROUNDING UP THE REST – CONNACHT AND ULSTER

Cavan Monaghan The constituency redraw removed over 13,000 people from west Cavan and reduced this constituency from five to four seats.  This also had the effect of leaving the population evenly divided between Cavan and Monaghan. It is likely that each county will elect two TDs. In Monaghan, Fine Gael Minister Heather Humphries will benefit more…

PEBS

Why #GE16 has turned me off

No longer do the youth of Ireland vote for party principles, or familiar faces. We do not want our national parliamentarians working on potholes or medical cards, we want them working on making the weak in our society strong. We live in a world so much bigger than Fianna Fail or Fine Gael. We have more…

Imagine Belfast square logo

Imagine… the Great Big Politics Quiz is back

What a time for politics fans to be alive! RoI general election tomorrow, NI Assembly election in May, topped off by perhaps the most important poll of the year, the EU referendum on June 23rd. If all that wasn’t exciting enough, the Great Big Politics Quiz returns next month as part of the fantastic Imagine more…