No details as yet, other than it went through with no votes against… More detail later this evening…
Update: The decision is made, and as party member John Lund notes below the fold, the new entity (they’ve still to settle the issue of the name) they have agreed to fight the next two big elections under a single banner..
Update to the Update Statements from David Cameron and Owen Paterson below the fold:
Conservative leader, David Cameron said:
“I am delighted by this agreement between the Conservatives and the Ulster Unionists. It will give all the people of Northern Ireland, for the first time in decades, a new choice in politics. For too long Northern Ireland has been outside of the mainstream of politics in the United Kingdom. This new political force will help change that, and allow everyone in Northern Ireland to participate fully in political life both in Northern Ireland and throughout the United Kingdom.”
Speaking after a unanimous decision by Northern Ireland Conservative Party members, Shadow Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, Owen Paterson said:
“I am very pleased that a new political force will be created. This will give real influence to all Northern Ireland voters on the crucial day to day issues such as taxation, pensions and the economy.”
Unofficial response from John Lund:
Tonight The Ulster Unionist Party under Reg Empey and David Campbells leadership entered a new political sphere. They joined David Camerons Conservative and Unionists in a New Political Force committed to fighting both the European and next General Elections. Sir Reg has lead his party executive to a unanimous decision with 90 voting for the arrangement with only two abstentions. I would personally like to congratulate both these two gentlemen and particularly Owen Paterson MP the Shadow Secretary of State and Neil Johnston the NI Conservative and Unionist Party.
All four have succeeded in achieving this historic event, Reg particularly has succeeded in leading his party to possibly the most successful and unanimous conclusion in since the early days of The Ulster Unionist Council.
This combination will gain from the eleven years of Tory reinvention finally successfully achieved by David Cameron and his ultra professional team. The new force now have possibly the most professional political campaigning team in Europe. This will thus leapfrog the new force from the doldrums of the last election into being on the Government Benches after the next election with Jim Nicholson MEP reinforcing his position as one of the senior members of the Conservative Group in the European Parliament.
The previous voting and the large non-voting electorate of this province are now being given the chance to vote for a completely national UK wide combination similar to Winston Churchills post war election victory over Clement Attlee which lead to 14 years of Tory rule . The timing is very opportune to the mutual Social Justice policies which will see Ian Duncan Smith arriving in Belfast as early as the 3rd of December which will be a busy week as David Cameron will address the UUP conference on the 6th of December where One Nation Toryism will come to Northern Ireland. Adventurous joint manifesto policies will start to be rolled out with phenomenal economic benefits for all Ulstermen.
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