Ominous. The annonymous blgger at the Social Affairs Unit makes a comparison between the Tory’s fortunes and the UU’s ill starred campaign in Northern Ireland. Neither party has convincingly marked out its own battlegrounds.The campaign’s ‘decency’ strapline is becoming a millstone around its neck for several reason, not least:
Now this may or may not be true, but in an electoral environment where, far from being hegemonic, and thus able to intimidate voters rhetorically, the UUP is on the back foot, already suffering from minority status, and desperately looking to win voters back, it was madness to insult lost and non-voters.
And whilst Michael Copeland may well be completely innocent, the decency strapline compounds the problem:
The man in question, Michael Copeland, is of course defiantly innocent, but even at the level of being laughed at (‘keep government clean: keep Trimble out’ being the level of humour from Republicans still smarting from their serried run-ins with the police) it’s cripplingly embarrassing.
And of course it’s hard not to believe that it couldn’t get worse. No doubt some minds are thinking back to the illfated Back to Basics strapline that so thwarted the last years of the Tory government. Eight years later and they still haven’t recovered from that one!
Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty