I remember talking to a Newry and Mourne councillor last year, before the 7 council plan was unveiled. He noted at the time that many of his colleagues on the council were not keen on the transfer of real power to council level, because they would have to take potentially unpopular decisions that would need to be defended at the following elections. No doubt, it is more terrifying in prospect than in reality. But there’s a residual suspicion of ‘dodging the difficult questions’ hanging over the apparent willingness of both major parties to let Peter Hain get on with the slimming of government, before they even contemplate taking power. Gareth Gordon regales us with some of the detail, including the proposal to terminate the Orders in Council mechanism and allow local MPs to amend Northern Ireland legislation. Devolution, how are ya?
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