WRITING in the Times today, Trimble biographer Dean Godson notes a number of issues that led to the UUP leader’s downfall. He believes Trimble was taken for granted, by both the British and Irish Governments, and by nationalists. But perhaps Godson needs to ask why so many nationalists who shored up Trimble’s vote (and others) in the past felt they couldn’t do so again this week.Hat tip to slug9987, who linked to this on the New Gig for Trimble? thread. Thought it deserved a thread of its own, since Dean Godson’s biography of Trimble, ‘Himself Alone’ seems to be highly regarded by Sluggerettes.
ADDS: Trimble himself has blamed republicans and the British Government for his party’s demise.
Mr Trimble said: “The basic underlying cause is that the Republican movement have not behaved properly over the years.
“They have not themselves implemented the Agreement. If they had implemented the Agreement then they would have disarmed completely in May 2000, that is what they undertook to do, that is what they failed to do,” said Mr Trimble.
He said rather than implement the Agreement they had exploited it.
“The net result of all that is that there is total disgust in the Unionist community with them.
“That is the basic underlying factor. A contributing factor is that the government, which ought to have upheld the Agreement and policed the Agreement, has been far too indulgent to Republicans.”
Mr Trimble said he suspected that ultimately the DUP, which has replaced his party as the voice of unionism, would seek to have the Agreement implemented in full.
Despite the rhetoric the DUP appeared to him to have “given up the objective of destroying the Agreement”, he said.
Questioned on BBC Radio 4`s Today programme on whether he was about to step down as leader, he said: “Not this weekend, and I`m not sure what I will do, to be quite honest. I am going to consult with colleagues.
“There is a collective leadership of the UUP. We will come to a consensus about the way forward and take it from there.”
The full text of Trimble’s statement, and the Prime Minister’s glowing tribute, is here.
Oh, and Peter Robinson is calling for DUP representation in the House of Lords.