Government deadlocked since 19th June

That’s according to the Newsletter. Apparently she “cannot progress three pieces of proposed legislation work because the devolved government has not met since June 19”. There is a meeting of the Executive scheduled for Thursday, and no sign that anything inside the two main parties has changed. Yet there are according to Reg Empey some 38 papers stuck in the pipeline. The DUP’s Peter Weir claims that the First Minister has approved 30 of them for discussion by the Executive.

“It is my understanding that the First Minister has cleared over 30 papers, sufficient to fill two or three Executive agendas and he has sought to have the Executive meet on a number of occasions.

“Concerning recent issues that have received press attention, the DUP has said that we are willing to talk to other parties concerning other issues. Nevertheless, all parties should be in no doubt that attempting to frustrate the working of the Northern Ireland Executive in a vain attempt to get their own way will achieve nothing.”

If Empey is accurate, that leaves about eight key issues that the DUP are withholding approval of, with Sinn Fein effectively blocking thirty.

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