Region Archives: Ireland

After a financial crisis government majorities shrink, parliaments fragment…


POLL SCRAMBLE: According to the latest Ipsos/MRBI poll for the Irish Times the main political peloton behind Fine Gael currently consists of independents, Sinn Fein and Fianna Fail. At the moment Fianna Fail’s only compensation here seems to be that their positions reverse somewhat when there is a sign of an election.

How many civic receptions does it take to make an NI controversy?

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HOUSE OF O’NEILLS: How many civic receptions does it take to make an NI controversy? An SDLP motion is to go before Belfast City Council next week proposing the two teams are honoured at a groundbreaking City Hall event. However, Ulster Unionist councillor Jim Rodgers questioned the motives behind the proposal

Election Rule #2: Don’t get backed into a corner

DEFENSIVE POLITICS: Politicians find themselves forced to take a course of action and then can regret it later. It happens on policy, resignations, constituency matters. It’s now a long way until Spring and there is a danger that if people are giving credit for the budget now, it will be but a memory in the more…

When is “an independent study” on Irish unification not independent?

When it has been commissioned, under cover, by Friends of Sinn Féin USA, perhaps… Sinn Féin were quick to welcome the recent announcement of the “first-ever economic modeling [of the] economic benefits Of Irish unification” at the Harvard Club in Manhattan.  Twice, in fact.  An Phoblacht were too. The press release from Sinn Féin MEP, Matt more…

An Insight into Belfast’s and Europe’s Past: Rest and Be Thankful by Fr Daniel Cummings – Book Review


The autobiography of a Redemptorist missionary might not be at the top of everyone’s reading list, but a new book by the late Fr Daniel Cummings should appeal to a much broader audience than might be expected. Rest and be Thankful: Autobiography of a Belfast Missionary – Daniel Cummings C.Ss.R, was published this year and more…

Nine points on the succession of Colum Eastwood to SDLP leader…

SDLP15 Colum Eastwood advertising truck

NEW BOSS: The SDLP is getting rather good at changing leaders, so that Colum Eastwood’s win flowed from disruption rather than by some kind of insider’s agreement. Being a Gen Xer may help him open doors with younger voters. And perhaps this weird and messy deal unwinding from Stormont will be his first real test?

Cork Sinn Féin party whip: “Nobody wants to lose a councillor.”

If losing one councillor may be regarded as a misfortune, and two carelessness, then three looks like… [Wilfulness? – Ed]  Perhaps…  But if Sinn Féin thought they had drawn a line under their little local difficulty in Cork when the party’s sitting TD Sandra McLellan announced she would not be standing in the next General Election, they might more…

LIVE blog for the SDLP Conference and Leadership election…

SDLP delegates

CONFERENCE LIVE: You can follow today’s proceedings of today’s SDLP conference and leadership election results in our CoverItLive live blog. David and Alan and other selected tweeters will keep you up to date with news and interviews, the leader’s speech at 12pm and finally the details of the results at 5pm.

Labour TD wave and cheer as Kelly shoots them in the foot…


SHOOTING ACCIDENT: Derek Mooney​ argues that the best chance many second placed FG TD in a constituency who came in after a party front runner have in the next election is the demise of a sitting Labour rival. Mishandling of the ‘rent certainty’ issue only makes those Labour TDs more vulnerable.

Irish Elections: Chasing the Democracy Dream

Beasts and Gods

DEMOS RETURNS: The Athenians and the Romans shared many things, but they had radically different ideas on government. In Rome, most State power was reserved to the winners of elections. Athens focused instead on intensive citizen debate, frequent direct votes, and lottery-appointed officials to handle the bureaucracy.