Who will win over a critical percentage of Catholics, SF or unionism…?

THERE are some similar themes about the unlikelihood of Irish reunification in the near future running through Malachi O’Doherty’s article in the Tele yesterday (not online, but you never know…) and Henry McDonald in the Guardian. O’Doherty argues that Sinn Fein’s alternative route to a united Ireland must convince republicans that the party’s political project is making progress (ironically, a myth unionism is heavily reliant upon too). The SF case must remain plausible to republicans, yet, argues O’Doherty, the evidence is to the contrary. The old chestnut of Catholics out-breeding Prods is unlikely to happen any time soon, and there is a small but significant number of Catholic unionists that will keep 50%+1 on hold for even longer. McDonald picks up on this argument, arguing that as the demographics slowly shift towards a Catholic majority, unionists should aim to woo those who are sympathetic to the status quo. So instead of cultural triumphalism, unionists should consider embracing moves to make the UK and NI an even warmer house for those Catholics who are potential supporters of the union. Would any unionist consider supporting constitutional reform to remove the ban on a Catholic monarch because it is possibly in the best interests of the Union?