Whatever happened to Sinn Fein…

A week or two ago there was a photo op for Gerry Adams and Mary Lou McDonald on Howth Head. One journalist who was present told Slugger the only memorable thing he could remember was when someone asked Gerry what he thought of the McDowell accession to the top of the PDs. Whilst Sinn Fein may not be making much headway on the airwaves, it is reported to be throwing everything but the kitchen sink at some of its key targets, almost to the exclusion of all other considerations. Cian believes it is the late arrival of fragmentation politics:

Recent polls suggest a cooling in the Sinn Fein vote and a general boosting of the Fianna Fail one. The Sinn Fein machine has set about slicing off a section of Fianna Fail support for its own. It pounds pavements in working class areas, getting its message across that the party of support is not aligned with their interests. “Look behind the rhetoric and you will see a party that doesn’t support you” is the alluring call. Independents operate in a similar vein, emphasising how the parties do not represent certain interests, despite their claims/appeals to.

The test for the new strategy is, of course, next May, at which time I shall be proved foolishly naive or sharply insightful.

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