“Timetable is a government objective…”

In Westminster this morning there was little sign of any nervousness on the DUP benches. Indeed in response to a question from Nigel Dodds, the Secretary of State noted: “the May 2008 date agreed at St Andrews is a government objective”. He went on to contrast it with two dates laid down in legislation: 30th January, for the dissolution of the current Transitional Assembly: and March 26th, when the newly elected Assembly is supposed to take up devolved powers. Which confirms the DUP’s line throughout this ‘crisis’ that it is not obliged to harden an objective into an obligatory deadline in advance of, or even after, any move by Sinn Fein to support policing…

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