Voluntary coalition or exclusion?

SDLP leader Mark Durkan claims that Downing Street pressurised his party “very strongly in the direction of voluntary coalition or exclusion, call it what you will” in January.

Sinn Féin chief negotiator Martin McGuinness said Mr Durkan’s comments were designed to make his party relevant ahead of forthcoming Westminster and local government elections.

The government’s position is that it has to explore all the options being put forward by the various parties,” a Downing Street spokesman said.

“That does not mean it has decided on a particular one option.”

  • aquifer

    A politician was pressurized. God luv him.

    Voluntary coalition or exclusion?

    Its not an either or. The SDLP can set hard terms for inclusion, or marginalisation if you will, that could give the centre parties more clout in the executive. Have the executive elected by the whole assembly to allow members their ‘least bad’ choices, and to reward parties that can agree joint slates across the sectarian divide.

    The current SDLP position awards the casting vote on the composition of the executive to the PIRA army council.

    SDLP. Electoral Hole. Stop digging.