Well, just heard Ken Reid on the Hatfield House talks (these were day long talks, not just for a few hours grabbed on the Sabbath)… It seems the pretence that this was nothing more than soundings on the current impasse, is slowly giving way to the sense that Unionist unity was nearer the mark… He’s saying now that there are some people involved in those talks for whom the framework has to be forged in a matter of weeks not months… So some questions for the Tories:- Did the fabled issue of community confidence emerge in the talks?
– If they did, is there now a shared understanding between the Conservatives and the two local Unionist parties on what that means?
– And considering that the current position of the two governments is that there are already the conditions necessary for a deal, are they preparing to break with that current consensus?
We may not get the answers to those questions, but they are stirring around in the background regardless…
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