Gerry Moriarty is in Scotland with the rest of the press pack waiting for messages to descend from the great clubhouse on high. He reckons there are three possible outcomes to Northern Ireland’s final question:
London and many in the DUP believe is realisable, is the “post-dated cheque” policing/power-sharing agreement endorsed by all parties by November 24th but not actually cashed or implemented until later.
The second, which is favoured by Dublin and Sinn Féin, is where Sinn Féin will sign up to policing by November 24th contingent on a DUP guarantee to share power, also by that deadline, and that the Northern Executive and Assembly would be back and running by November 24th or November 25th.
The third possible outcome is that Mr Ahern and Mr Blair will have determined that agreement is impossible, either before the November 24th deadline or even within six months of that date.
The sideshow it seems keeping everyone awake up there is the speculation over the split within the DUP. But the only singular voice that matters is the party leader’s, Ian Paisley.
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