Tag Archives | DUP

Do we really need another debate about flags?

Driving Licence

Tonight our esteemed elected representatives in the Northern Ireland Assembly are due to debate driving licences. Good news – I hear you cry – at last some action may be taken to address the disparity in the cost of driving licences between Northern Ireland and Great Britain. Last week there was much consternation when it more…

Forecasting the 2015 UK General Election

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CON 252, LAB 231, SNP 52, LD 41, UKIP 38,  DUP 9, GRN 9, PC 8, SF 6, SDLP 2, Independent 1, Speaker 1 Required for majority: 322 (CON 70 short, LAB 91 short) The upcoming UK General Election has been called “the most unpredictable for almost a century”. There are several reasons for this; the rise of UKIP, the Greens, and the SNP, the collapse of the Liberal Democrats, who nevertheless seem to maintain highly localized popularity more…

Stewart Dickson: Comprendre t-il?

A scant few days ago many in the world were united in saying “Je suis Charlie” to identify with the journalists at Charlie Hebdo. Many may regard Charlie Hebdo as frequently insulting, tasteless and at times unpleasant. However, the point was that freedom of speech to say (or write or draw) insulting, tasteless and unpleasant more…

Debating the Debates: NI will not be present

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I will be writing to BBC and ITV to identify why the DUP is not included in new debate format. More seats than Plaid, SNP & Greens. — Peter Robinson (@DUPleader) January 22, 2015 Peter Robinson will be writing to complain that whilst the DUP has more seats and votes than some of the other more…

Quid pro quo in assembly speaker appointments

Robin

The DUP’s Robin Newton was today appointed as the NI assembly’s principal deputy speaker with support from Sinn Féin. The appointment was confirmed minutes after the East Belfast MLA was confirmed as a deputy speaker joining the experienced John Dallat of the SDLP and Roy Beggs of the UUP. Last week the DUP supported the more…

The Mirror Image-Minoritarianism

This is part two of my analysis of the Haass talks and Unionist thinking. This article also appeared on my blog Haass begins with: …there was a feeling that change would disadvantage them. First, Haass fails to notice the change that had occurred in the immediate run up to his talks had disadvantaged them. The more…

Of Speakers, yoghurt, murdering pensioners and hypocrisy

This week saw Mitchell McLaughlin elected as Speaker of the Assembly. The News Letter pointed to his previous comments refusing to accept that the murder of Jean McConville was a crime. Leaving aside McLaughlin personally there is a certain symbolism in a Sinn Fein speaker being elected just a week before the 34th anniversary of more…

Acht na Gaeilge: Time for a mature discussion

The Stormont House Agreement arrived at as Christmas dawned was supposed to have heralded a new dispensation for Northern Ireland and yet here we are in early January with the same old theatrics. A Sinn Féin Minister proposes a consultation process on the long promised Irish Language Act (2006, St Andrews) and up pops that more…

Corr-Johnston: What we need is Robin Hood when all we have is Prince John.

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Corporation Tax dominated the headlines in 2014, writing for Slugger the PUP Cllr for Oldpark, Julie Ann Corr-Johnston argues for a rethink of the entire debate Corporation tax will probably go over the heads of many in our community, but it has the potential of bringing 50-60,000 jobs into Northern Ireland over the coming years-Peter more…

Tony Blair: Believed OTR Letters were essential in getting Sinn Fein on board and left to DUP there would’ve been no peace process

BLAIR

Tony Blair stepped up to the On The Runs Committee today to give evidence about the now infamous letters issued partly under his administration. Between the hard questioning led by Naomi Long and Ian Paisley Jnr, the most important pieces of information throughout the entire day came from a slightly softer approach adopted by Sylvia more…

Haass: From the other side of the table

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This post originally appeared in the Ultonia blog Richard Haass has recently done another interview on the failure of the Haass process. In it he blames Unionism for the failure of the talks. This piece is to make the case that the failure of the process lay closer to home than he presents. It lay more…

Can social conservativism redefine political division in Northern Ireland?

You might think listening to some of Northern Ireland’s commentators that in every instance any centre right case for freedom is doomed against a centre left case for equality since the latter is already a done deal: ie, that the centre right loses not simply on merit but because they have no popular support. Yet the largest and (at least more…

Same sex marriage? No thanks we’re British

Same Sex

As of January 1st 2015 Northern Ireland is the only part of the United Kingdom where same sex marriage remains illegal. A new law on gay marriage came into effect in Scotland in December 2014 and the first same sex weddings were held at 00:01 on Hogmanay. A total of 250 couples have converted their more…

#StormontTalks: The Assembly still stands

From the BBC Prime Minister David Cameron said he was delighted a workable agreement had been reached. Irish Foreign Affairs Minister Charlie Flanagan said it “sets out a plan for financial and welfare reform.” First Minister Peter Robinson said he would be recommending the document to his party executive. Ulster Unionist Party leader Mike Nesbitt more…

Cameron and Kenny go home

From the BBC, David Cameron and Enda Kenny go home after talks failed to reach a deal. There was an offer on the table of spending powers that would amount to £1 billion over five years. However, the reaction from Sinn Fein was not very encouraging for Cameron as the Education Minister, John O’Dowd labelled more…

Cold and stormy at ‘Cnoc an Anfa’

I was up in Stormont yesterday – Cnoc an Anfa is the Irish for Stormont – and it certainly lived up to its name.  It was bitterly cold, so cold I could feel my fingers begin to detach themselves from my body as I clutched my ‘Acht Gaeilge’ placard at the bottom of the steps more…

Peter Robinson’s remarkable agility in returning to his strategic progressive vision for unionism

In case you missed it, I’ve clipped a particularly good analytical duo from Newton Emerson and Dearbhail McDonald from yesterday’s Sunday Politics… Mc Donald makes the point that devolving corporation tax without building opportunity at home is a bit of a wasted effort… Emerson follows through by making the point that we don’t have a more…

Andrew McCracken: “Equality is not the preserve of any political party”

Writing exclusively for Slugger O’Toole, the Chief Executive of Community Foundation Northern Ireland gets up on our soapbox to talk about equality and how we should focus on this important issue For those of us trying to make steps forward for our community, it takes us many steps back when politicians poison the very words more…