Which political parties actually do support the UDA?

Over on Brassneck I’ve blogged the UCU poster story. This is, or should be, highly embarrassing to David Cameron, and he would be well advised to do something about it if is even half way serious about his promise to take sectarianism out of politics here.

Although how far his rivals will be able to push the knife home is open to conjecture. The SDLP’s Alban Maguinness today notes that three prominent members of the UDA, whose funding had been cut in principle by Margaret Ritchie are now being salaried by European funding. Funding that, the SDLP allege, has been sanctioned by the Office of First Minister and deputy First Minister. Funding that was originally sanctioned by Peter Hain in order to provide the UDA with the resources to turn from violence to having its own political presence.

  • Continental Drifter

    The Tory link-up was a good idea. But then, so was betamax.

  • alan56

    I think its great to see the UU/Tory alliance is proving successful at turning paramilitary people away from violence and on to the path of secular democratic politics. Doesnt everyone agree?

  • Ian

    Mick,

    “The UDA were once a proscribed terrorist organisation.”

    Are they not [i]still[/i] proscribed? Like the Provos are still proscribed, although neither are on the list of organisations not on a recognised ceasefire.

    “An SDLP Minister, under considerable fire from her DUP and Sinn Fein Executive colleagues.”

    Not a complete sentence! Shouldn’t it end along the lines of “tried unsuccessfully to cease official funding to a UDA-linked organisation”?

  • ??

    I think its great to see the UU/Tory alliance is proving successful at turning paramilitary people away from violence and on to the path of secular democratic politics. Doesnt everyone agree? ………..

    No Guns, No Posters.. is that how they sold it?

  • alan56

    OK ??
    I was having a bit of fun but if we really want to discuss the DUP’s relationship with dodgy organisations then we have to think about Raging Robbo and the red beret, Clontibret and his famously paying the punt fine. Now I don’t want to cause legal probs so will not name further names. But you, I and many others will know of strange alliances not least William McCrea on the platform in Portadown with Billy Wright. By comparison I would have thought puttin up a poster is small beer!

  • ??

    UUP/UVF/UCUNF/UDA

  • Mick Fealty

    Yes Ian. That’s being corrected as we speak. And thanks for the correct.

  • The link to your brassneck post isn’t working.

  • Neil

    I would have thought puttin up a poster is small beer!

    It should be but it isn’t for two reasons. One, election time, time to get the knives out and attack your opponents. Two, the Tories have dreamed up this link, and have the affrontery to suggest that they are going to remove sectarianism from politics here, this despite the good old UU(DA) having some issues with the sectarianism within.

    This underlines the sectarian elements existence while Reg and DC patronise the fuck out of everyone by telling them how much better they are than us, and how they’ll pick us up, dust us off and bring us along with them if we’ll just be good enough to shut up and do as we’re told.

    My prediciton is the Unionist – National Front – Third Force alliance will be disolved once the two eejits (or to be fair DC and that other balloon Empty) cop on to the fact that it’s been nothing but mutually damaging.

  • alan56

    ??
    DUP
    Ulster Resistance
    LVF
    Clontibret

  • fin

    Lets get things into perspective here, in government the Tories refused to proscribe the UDA until they had no choice pretending that cover names used by them were actually differnt organisations and different people, they allowed the security forces to work hand in hand with the UDA to murder nationalists and they allowed the British army to arm them to murder innocent nationalists, if the worst thing the Tories are doing today is employing the UDA to put up election posters than its good to see the Tories finally embracing democratic politics.

    Its a funny old world because the daughter of the Tory PM from those days has recently gotten more media coverage for been a tad offensive to black people than that PMs son got when he was involved in a plot to overthrow an entire african country.

  • Greenflag

    Well done the Conservative Party and the UUP . Bloody marvellous innit ? Well if Norway can win the Eurovision I suppose anything is possible ;)?

    Don’t forget to invite those UDA lads around for afternoon tea and cucumber sandwiches . And don’t forget to bring along a nice fat Catholic for the lads to beat the crap out of .

    This should be a great help in attracting the Catholic turkey vote for the ahem non sectarian Union:(

    I’ve always maintained that English Conservatives have been a disruptive force in this island’s politics . And now they’re at it again – Not of course for any particular interest in Northern Ireland just as a means to an end .

    Lady Sylvia of North Down seems to have at least copped that much . Must be a bright spark that one . They say it takes only one light bulb to light up a room . On that basis the UUP would need to be dragged to the Millenium Stadium in Cardiff and subjected to the full power of the floodlights for a month before any light might descend on the darkness that shines within 🙁

  • alan56

    Greenflag

    You are so cynical !!!

  • Ian

    Sorry to be pedantic Mick, but in cutting and pasting from my previous comment, you’ve left an unneccesary question mark in place. I used it in the context of asking you, “surely you missed out ***** ?”

    But I don’t think there’s any question over the accuracy of the now complete sentence regarding Ritchie’s attempt to cease UDA funding.

    (And to be ultra-pedantic, if you’re going back to amend your post again then you could put a comma after ‘colleagues’.)

  • “Don’t forget to invite those UDA lads around for afternoon tea and cucumber sandwiches”

    Greenflag, President McAleese has already topped you on that score but she’s merely marching to the UK/Irish ‘chosen’ paramilitary tune. It’s all part of toxicity at the heart of the ‘peace process’. Ahern and Blair may have gone but their legacy lives on.

  • SM

    …English Conservatives…
    Posted by Greenflag on May 18, 2009 @ 03:19 PM

    Was it not the NI Conservatives who negotiated the alliance on behalf of the Party Leader? A lot of commentators here seem to equate Conservative with English, when in fact they have members & associations in all 4 home nations, and elected representatives in 3 of those 4.

    One of the risks of two separate parties fielding joint candidates is that each party remains independent, and thus responsible for its own internal discipline. It seems that the UUP are thus far rather lacking in internal discipline, and that is rather embarrassing for the Conservatives.

    I still remain hopeful that the offer of a chance to vote for a party that can form the next Government will outshine the teething problems emerging as the deal brings out from the UUP woodwork their internal problems.

  • Ian

    “My prediciton is the Unionist – National Front – Third Force alliance will be disolved once the two eejits (or to be fair DC and that other balloon Empty) cop on to the fact that it’s been nothing but mutually damaging.”

    Yes, but the real question is how long will it take until that reality sinks in? If Nicholson loses his seat would that do it? Or will the pact trundle onto to the next general election, when Sylvia Hermon will be forced into standing as an independent thereby leaving the UCU – New Taskforce with zero MPs??

  • Bob Wilson

    Ian – I predict that after the next election there will be over 350 Conservative and Unionist MPs – with or without the Gordon Brown apologist Hermon!

  • Yes, Greenflag you cynic. Can you not see that UCUNF is bringing real, national, politics to us backwards Paddy natives? If you can’t say anything constructive don’t say anything at all.

  • ??

    Ian – I predict that after the next election there will be over 350 Conservative and Unionist MPs – with or without the Gordon Brown apologist Hermon!

    or any from NI

  • alan56

    You tell him Sammy

  • ??

    so bob, not one comment about the UDA then? guess the tories dont mind terrorists lending a hand

  • I predict that after the next election there will be over 350 Conservative and Unionist MPs

    I predict that there will be zero Conservative and Unionist MPs in Northern Ireland after the next election. And here’s a little hint – telling the people who you’re trying to get to vote for you that you don’t actually give a shit about their votes is not smart politics.

  • Greenflag

    Nevin ,

    ‘It’s all part of toxicity at the heart of the ‘peace process’.’

    I should have known that was coming 😉 Still better a lttle ‘toxicity’ than blood on the streets eh ?
    I always say a few cucumber sandwiches are worth more than a hundred corpses but then as a man of no principles some may consider I’m far too cynical for my own good .

  • alan56

    ??

    ‘guess the Tories don’t mind terrorists lending a hand’

    This is rich coming from a supporter of a party (DUP) that elected a former LVF prisoner as a press spokesman in Ballymoney. This same spokesman called for the early release of the murderers of the two friends in a bar in Poyntzpass. hypocrocy in the extreme.

  • Neil

    so bob, not one comment about the UDA then?

    Not noteworthy for someone in the know I reckon. Old news. Decent people kill fenians.

  • alan56

    Neil ??
    Not one comment about LVF, Ballymoney etc??

  • Greenflag

    SM ,

    ‘A lot of commentators here seem to equate Conservative with English, when in fact they have members & associations in all 4 home nations, and elected representatives in 3 of those 4.

    Indeed and those elected reps are what % of the Tory Party ? Who has ever heard of a Scottish or Welsh Conservative and even in England they tend to represent that part of England south of line from the Wash to the Bristol Channel .

    I understand that NI Conservatives are trying to put the best spin on a new age for NI politics . Problem being most NI folk are not new agers nor for that matter am I 😉

    BTW the UUP need to leave the woodwork alone imho. Any more tampering with same and the whole shoddy edifice will collapse .

    But let me be clear -If I was voting in North Down I’d give Sylvia a vote despite my antipathy to Unionism per se . When you have no principles all things are possible 🙂

  • Neil

    Alan,

    it’s the duplicity I have a problem with more than anything. The DUP haven’t set out a pitch selling a message that they are going to drag us backward facing paddy’s into the future, helping the civilised UUP sort out the mess we made. It’s a give in there are more than enough examples of DUP duplicity in this and many other regards, likewise to be said of SF who have had to perform some spectacular u-turns to get us where we are now.

    However I reitierate the point that neither of them are preaching a condescending message which from the UUP kind of sounds like washing their hands of the situation as it stands (despite having been instrumental in creating it) and placing themselves on a higher moral plain – they will remove sectarianism from politics. Bollocks. No one will, but if it could be done the UCUNF would not be the boy for the job.

  • alan56

    Neil,

    Surely we should all applaud any movement in any party towards more inclusive, secular politics. That is of course assuming that we see this as a reasonable goal.
    I have no doubt that UU/Tories will have great trouble in this. There will be many skeletons found in many cupboards. That is part of the process. All I was trying to point out was that no party has a monopoly of skeletons.

  • Greenflag

    ‘they will remove sectarianism from politics. Bollocks. No one will, ‘

    Now theres an honest comment . The present NI State was built on sectarianism and until it is dissolved and replaced by an entity or entities in which religious denomination is politically of none or little significance then that’s the way it will be .

    Perhaps the UUP lifelline to the UDA is just their way of affirming the political realities of the NI State as they will be for the forseeable future ?

  • alan56

    Greenflag

    ‘entities in which religious denomination is politically of none or little significance’

    Like ROI for instance?

  • SM

    Neil

    I don’t think the CUs are preaching or being condescending. They are saying lets change, lets move away from same old tribal fight and try a policy fight instead. By acknowledging their need to change they are acknowledging their far-from-spotless past. You’re way of looking at things seems to be that people with a past can’t try and promote a new vision for politics here?

    People my age are SICK of the local parties and the nonsense of the past. Many don’t bother to vote because none of the local parties offer us anything to vote for, none of them can form a government at Westminster. The CUs are at least trying to give people like that a reason to vote. The UUP have sectarian baggage but I’ll hold my nose and give them a vote anyway because at least they are trying to change. Maybe it won’t work out, but I hope that it does.

  • Ian

    David Cameron is in town (well, Ballymena) on Thursday:

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/8056221.stm

    Does anyone local care to go along and challenge Cameron about his links with the UDA?

  • Ulsters my homeland

    [b]Which political parties actually do support the UDA?[/b]

    Is the Catholic primate a member of a policital party? if he is, I say its that one.

    and Fianna Fáil also supports them. Oul Bertie made them tea and chocolate buns in Castle Buildings. I bet you they bribbed him with money 😉

  • Ulsters my homeland

    “[i]The present NI State was built on sectarianism and until it is dissolved and replaced by an entity or entities in which religious denomination is politically of none or little significance then that’s the way it will be.[/i]

    Boring Greenflag. Boring, boring, boring!

  • ??

    he UUP have sectarian baggage but I’ll hold my nose and give them a vote anyway because at least they are trying to change…………….

    in the last two weeks the tories or UUP, wahtever u want to call them, have complained about the GAA in tesco, about a muslim being employed by the BBC as head of religous affairs, complaining about the playing of the irish national anthem in newry, and now having the UDA put up posters for them

    so non-sectarian

  • alan56

    ??

    Have the UU/Tories ever had a press spokesman who was a convicted UDA terrorist (accomplice to murder). The DUP have had such a spokesperson in Ballymoney.

  • New Blue

    I had the good fortune to talk with a number of North Belfast protestant residents over the weekend, aged from 18 to 55. All but one of them had either never voted or not voted in the last 10 years.

    Some of the comments I received were that ‘Sinn Fein were the only party who helped me get a new house.’

    ‘If my daughter fell for a catholic I would want her to be happy, and wouldn’t care where he was from.’

    ‘I work with catholics every day and they are just the same – they are scared of losing their jobs and not having enough money to live.’

    No sense of bigotry or hatred, just an overwhelming desire for change.

    The fact that the Conservatives were being seen as trying to offer a new direction was something that seemed to genuinely create interest.

    ‘My dad always voted labour, when we moved back here he stopped voting, he told me that they were all the same.’

    These are ordinary, working people who just want tomorrow to be better than yesterday

    I am not and will not jump to the defence of individuals who want to re-enforce the bigotry that we all grew up with, I will not support individuals who don’t care about those they are supposed to represent.

    I got involved in local politics because I want to help make a change that will make these peoples lives better (idealistic I know, but what is politics if not a stand for ideals?).

    We can come here and smugly point the fingers at each other and highlight the failings of each other, claiming the moral and idealistic high ground.

    But at the end of the day, if we have any belief in the basic principles of democracy, should we not be looking at how we can give the ordinary Billy or Liam a chance for a better life?

  • Bigger Picture

    New Blue,

    Snore………i was out in North Belfast too and the UDA were putting up posters for your election candidate, no offense but i reckon those people who you spoke to you think you look a quer idiot now.

  • “Still better a lttle ‘toxicity’ than blood on the streets eh ?”

    Can you not give us a better prognosis, Greenflag? 🙁

  • Bigger Picture

    Can we also gather then that you spoke to four people? or at least only four people who were able to give you a decent feedback?

    Quite frankly the people of North Belfast remember the last UUP MP only too well and back then they had to go to Sinn fein to help them get a house. Thank goodness that has changed.

  • alan56

    Bigger Picture

    What is your view on family dynasties?

  • Ulsters my homeland

    Bigger Picture

    What’s the bigger picture? We all know that loyalists don’t have to do much because they’re still in the UK, and all Republicans have to do is gather enough votes for a united independent Ireland.

    It seems like statemate to me, so what’s the bigger picture?

  • Greenflag

    Nevin ,

    ‘Can you not give us a better prognosis, Greenflag? 🙁 ‘

    Not in my time or in the time of anybody else on SOT I’m afraid .

  • Greenflag

    Alan 56,

    ‘Like ROI for instance?’

    You could do worse but also do beeter . We’ve at least had a couple of Protestant Presidents -several Jewish mayors and Government Ministers of both minority faiths elected for the main parties (FF, FG , Labour) in each case in 90% plus Catholic majority constituencies . I can’t recall the last time a Catholic was elected an MP for North Antrim or East Belfast or the Shankill ? Can you ?

  • Greenflag

    UMH ,

    ‘Boring Greenflag. Boring, boring, boring! ‘

    I know UMH but thats often the way with the truth. It is often boring and refuses to go away just like those grey Fermanagh steeples.Tib’s eve and all that .

  • alan56

    Green flag

    Not really into head counting like this but for the record there have indeed been unionist elected reps from the catholic community and I hope there will be many more.

  • Paddy Matthews

    Was it not the NI Conservatives who negotiated the alliance on behalf of the Party Leader?

    Indeed. And the Northern Ireland Conservatives can truthfully say that they have lost not a single councillor, Assembly member or MP over the deal.

    *cough*

  • Comrade Stalin

    Bob Wilson:

    Ian – I predict that after the next election there will be over 350 Conservative and Unionist MPs – with or without the Gordon Brown apologist Hermon!

    It’s a shame that you feel the need to mislead people in order to get your message across, Bob. There may well be over 350 Conservative Party MPs, but none of them will be Ulster Conservative and Unionists. The electorate aren’t going to buy this crap from you. The UDA antics are now, for the first time, moving Jim Nicholson away from nudging a win into seat-losing territory. In the next assembly and Westminster elections, the NI electorate won’t back a consistent loser.

    The UCUNF experiment is over.

  • Paddy Matthews

    Not really into head counting like this but for the record there have indeed been unionist elected reps from the catholic community and I hope there will be many more.

    We’ll give you Sir Denis Henry (1920s) and Sir John Gorman (mid 1990s). Any advance on two?

  • Bigger Picture

    Alan56

    I do not have a view on family dynasties. When i think of family dynasties i think of North Korea and the cult of personality that surrounds that particular regime.

    But since i know that you want me to say something like the above, i will now go one to rebut your attack on the DUP which would enivatbly follow anything i post.

    I have said on this site many times that i am an indepent minded DUP voter. I have no particular allegiance to the party and i am not a Free Presbyterian or any of the old fashioned DUP stereotypes. However i do agree with the DUP strategy, and that involves putting the best candidates forward at every possible election. Rejection on the grounds of sex, race, ethnicity, sexuality should not be tolerated.

    In that light i consider the current talk of family dynasties a sexist argument. Why is it ok for Peter Robinson and Nigel Dodds to be elected officials but not for their wives? Is it really because they should be at home rearing children and cooking the dinner? I also see it as a backward attempt to subdugate women from careers that are essentially dominated by men (and i am a man btw) who tripe out this argument.

    I do not think it has been an issue in the past, Iris Robinson is a very successful DUP MP and MLA who has achieved more on a constituency level than her husband has in recent years. Lets look at the facts:

    Iris Robinson entered the Strangford constituency that was solidly UUP under John Taylor for many years.

    She built up a base and ate into Taylor’s majority at subsequent Westminster elections.

    When Taylor retired to the Lord’s she won the seat against David McNarry by 1,000 votes

    At the subsequent election she took on an unknown McGimpsey (any relation to Michael or Chris btw? and you ask me about family dynasties?) and improved remarkably on that performance

    The DUP now has 4 MLA’s in a once staunchley UUP heartland.

    Is that riding on her husband’s coat tails?

    As for Diane Dodds, she has the largest electoral mandate of any cllr in NI.

    These are capable women in their own right and this talk of family dynasties only takes away from the work that politicians of all persuasion actually do.

    I also have a problem with the other parties in this regard:

    SF: How many Maskey’s are elected officials (2MLA’s and one cllr)

    UUP: McGimpsey’s

    TUV: Isn’t Jim Allister’s son head of the TUV at Queen’s?

    If you wanted the short answer, the best person should do the job regardless of their last name. People have elected these politicians on that basis and this is nothing more than an attempt to sully hard work done by them

  • Comrade Stalin

    The UUP isn’t short of family dynasties. Roy Beggs Jnr springs to mind.

  • alan56

    Paddy

    I know they are rare, you’re right. That is no great surprise given the nature of the horrible conflict here. Surely that does not negate the attempt to try an change this.

    PS> Lord Ballyedmond I think

  • Bigger Picture

    UMH

    The Bigger Picture refers to Unionist infighting. As you rightly point out nationalists are waiting for a majority to vote us into a Republic and that is why we need to stand together and stop stupid infighting and divisions. I originally thought of the name post St Andrews and have been using it ever since, and i feel now it would be no good changing it.

    The cry is that we need to see the Bigger Picture and stop attacking each other and look to our common enemy, Republicanism, because the more deep rooted our divisiosn come the sooner that dreadful dawn will come.

    Thanks for asking though. I was going to ask about your name but it seemed pretty self explanatory

  • Ulsters my homeland

    [i]The Bigger Picture refers to Unionist infighting.[/i]

    OK. How?

  • Bigger Picture

    Let’s see the Bigger Picture and move on from it. Why the fascination?

  • alan56

    Bigger Picture

    Your comments are interesting if perplexing.
    You mention your own background and how you are against any form of discrimination. I totally agree with all of that.
    You then go on the make a defence of Iris Robinson. That does not sit too well with the notion of no discrimination on the grounds of sexuality!
    You are also right that this is not just a DUP issue. It transcends the whole political class.
    I also agree that Arlene Foster has a good record on promoting women in politics.
    However to the average person there is just something that does not sit well with this. Mabe because of the earnings at a time when people are feeling the pinch of recession all parties should be aware of this.

  • I can’t recall the last time a Catholic was elected an MP for North Antrim or East Belfast or the Shankill ? Can you ?

    In the latter case, Gerry Adams in 2005. Or is Gearoid a Methodist these days?

    Lord Ballyedmond I think

    He isn’t an elected representative. The title ‘Lord’ is usually a giveaway.

  • Bigger Picture

    Alan56

    Iris is entitled to her views but i do not believe that she or DUP have ever actually forced out of the DUP or anyone from standing on the grounds of sexuality. I am sure that there are members or supporters of all the other parties who agree with her views but just were wise enough to keep quiet. But i have no problem defending her record as a constituency MP and her right to run for office, as the question of family dynasties poses.

    I agree that to the average voter that may well be the case and its maybe just unfortunate that it has occurred in the middle of an election, but i feel that the candidates are strong enough and can show by their record that they are the best person for the job regardless of their last name.

    On a side note did you know that Brian Cowan inherited his father’s seat in the Dail upon his death? And that i believe the Haughey family spawned to PM’s and countless TD’s. (Not great precedents i admit but something that i suppose is not unique to NI)

  • Ulsters my homeland

    Bigger Picture, you’re full of crap.

  • alan56

    Bigger Picture

    You’re right this is not confined to NI. Its in the DNA of politicians to gather a loyal group of people around them.
    Regarding Cowen and Haughey, those dynasties have not exactly covered themselves in glory. FF are in trouble.

  • Bigger Picture

    “Bigger Picture, you’re full of crap. ”

    What intriguing analysis, i tip my hat to you sir. Anything you would like to actually debate on rather than a silly little side show?

    alan56

    All the best i enjoyed our chat

  • hj

    http://ec.europa.eu/beneficiaries/fts/index_en.htm

    Commitment position key: SI2.452752.1
    Year: 2007 Amount €: 189.086,19
    Subject of grant or contract:
    Responsible Department: Justice, Freedom and Security Budget line name and number: Completion of preparatory actions for the victims of terrorist acts (18.05.04)
    Programme: Completion of preparatory actions for the victims of terrorist acts Co-financing rate: 80,00%
    Beneficiary
    Name: FAMILIES ACTING FOR INNOCENT RELATIVES CHARITY*FAIR
    Address: BT** **** MARKETHILL, ******** ROAD ** Country / Territory: United Kingdom

  • Greenflag

    Alan 56 ,

    ‘and I hope there will be many more. ‘

    There’s always hope I’ll give you that .

  • Greenflag

    alan56,

    ‘I know they are rare, you’re right. That is no great surprise given the nature of the horrible conflict here.’

    They’re rare not because of the conflict but because of the nature of the State of NI – the circumstances under which it was brought into existence, and the one party quasi fascist State which NI was from 1920 to 1972 . Anyway don’t beat yourself up over the facts of political history.

    ‘Surely that does not negate the attempt to try and change this.’

    True . However unlearning is very difficult if not impossible for most people and even more so for organisations that are 40 years into a kind of political rigor mortis. The word ‘change’ and the UUP do not sit easily together .

    Good luck in your efforts . Just don’t expect too much .

  • ??

    This is rich coming from a supporter of a party (DUP) that elected a former LVF prisoner as a press spokesman in Ballymoney. ………….

    so alan you seem remarkably content that NOW, at the present time, your party is up to its electoral neck with the UDA? no remorse or rebuke for your leadership? No?

  • dub

    Mick,

    The only thing which was impressive about cameron’s speech to the uup last year was its extremism… this was pointed out to you at the time yet still you ignore this fact… why don’t you reread it?

  • New Blue

    ??

    I have picked up (from a very good source) that the church minister named in the article in the SW is speaking with solicitors today to have the ‘newspaper’ retract his name, as he has had no involvement with the comments attributed to him.

    Could the whole story be a bit of spin?

    Maybe give him a ring and ask him yourself, rather than follow your ‘party line’.

  • Comrade Stalin

    Regarding Cowen and Haughey, those dynasties have not exactly covered themselves in glory. FF are in trouble.

    Me arse. FF could pass legislation permitting a cull of 10% of the Irish population and they’d still get voted in.

  • New Blue

    ??

    Can you (or any other DUP spokeperson)advise me if the following is true.

    Did a member of your party today approach the minister / pastor named in the SW article and apologise for ‘including them’ in the article, as the member of your party in queston was quite aware that the minister / pastor had made no such comments?

    Why would your party member be apologising to the minister / pastor if the story were factual?

    A prompt response, as they say, would be appreciated.

  • Different Drummer

    Bigger Picture – Smaller View

    “Iris is entitled to her views but i do not believe that she or DUP have ever actually forced out of the DUP or anyone from standing on the grounds of sexuality”

    Maybe you have not heard of the young ambitious DUP gospel singer by the name of Paul Berry who suffered exactly that fate….

  • New Blue

    It’s gone very quiet on the DUP benches…..

    Any chance of an answer to the questions I raised earlier?

  • Reader

    Bigger Picture: The Bigger Picture refers to Unionist infighting. As you rightly point out nationalists are waiting for a majority to vote us into a Republic and that is why we need to stand together and stop stupid infighting and divisions.
    Exactly wrong. The only vote that really matters is the referendum itself. Until then, unionism needs to broaden its appeal beyond the tribe and shake out the dross. And if that includes a period of knocking 7 bells out of each other (metaphorically), then so be it.
    Because I don’t actually want to go around agreeing with Campbell, or the Robinsons, or Willie McCrea just because they are waving the right flag.

  • New Blue

    ??

    In response to your last post on Petes thread

    Will you confirm that your colleague made a personal apology to the minister / pastor who was quoted (inaccurately) as having witnessed the ‘putting up of the poster’.

    Could you also comment on the negative comments that Diane and posse received from the electorate regarding your party (and the swish’s in particular) during their very short canvas of parts of North Belfast yesterday?

  • ??

    Will you confirm that your colleague made a personal apology to the minister / pastor who was quoted (inaccurately) as having witnessed the ‘putting up of the poster’.

    I know nothing of which you speak. You do so please name names. and have YOU spoken to the pastor ? or just more Tory smokescreens?

  • ??

    Could you also comment on the negative comments that Diane and posse received from the electorate regarding your party (and the swish’s in particular) during their very short canvas of parts of North Belfast yesterday? …….

    the DUP had great canvass in North Belfast, apart from the appearance of some UDA members with Tory posters under their arms.

  • Big Maggie

    ??,

    “the DUP had great canvass in North Belfast, apart from the appearance of some UDA members with Tory posters under their arms.”

    I wonder if they’re the same posters that have been sounding off on Slugger O’Toole :^)

  • Bigger Picture

    Different Drummer

    Sorry forgot about that one!!!

    Reader

    And the more we knock seven bells out of each other, the more we splinter and the quicker it happens. I’m not saying we all need to unite under one single party, competition between unionist parties is healthy but there is a balance to be drawn.

  • Big Maggie

    Bigger Picture,

    “And the more we knock seven bells out of each other, the more we splinter and the quicker it happens.”

    A naughty thought occurs to me. What if Sinn Féin and the SDLP were to make a secret pact before the next general election. The nationalist vote would wipe out the unionist vote—and Martin McGuinness would become first minister.

    It could happen :^)

  • Different Drummer

    Re Mr P. Berry DUP who was ousted on suspicion of being gay

    Bigger Picture Tells us: ‘Sorry Forgot About That One’

    One……?

    There are more of course who are in the closest who I cannot mention and are or have been in quite prominent positions – but you know how litigious the DUP can be…

    Anybody confirm the rumor that Robbo has sent out an injunction against anyone mentioning the issue of his XXXXXXXX XXXXXXX.[redacted to protect the fees office]

  • Big Maggie

    Different Drummer,

    “There are more of course who are in the closet who I cannot mention and are or have been in quite prominent positions – but you know how litigious the DUP can be…”

    How about a wee hint? Might they be those who sound off about gays more loudly than anybody else? :^)

  • Neil

    Berry was a church minister or some such was he not (why is it always the christians)? But not gay, it was after all a sports massage. In a hotel room.

  • Big Maggie

    “But not gay, it was after all a sports massage. In a hotel room.”

    “Who, dear? Me, dear? Gay, dear? No, dear! How very dare you?” :^)

  • New Blue

    BM

    Absolutely brilliant stuff, if you ever decide to do a stand up show, let me know.

  • north belfast watcher

    New Blue

    So to summarise, we have no comment from the UUP in North Belfast, no comment from Reggie, no comment from call me Dave, no comment from John Bunting and a very carefully worded “denial” from Jim Nicholson?