David Trimble and the importance of Catholics

Thanks to Gonzo for his Trimble/Kane post. I take it Trimble is signalling that Cameron will not encourage any faint unionist hopes that he’ll back a voluntary coalition and try to rewrite the GFA. His mention of Jonathan Crane links it to the Conservative centre. I don’t understand why Bobballs is ” confused.” Trimble explains at length that any change to the system can only be “organic” viz_

David Trimble

On the project your test is whether Cameron will back the unionist cause. How is that cause to be defined? Is it the Union or “facing down” nationalists? The project has the potential to widen and deepen the union. I know that large numbers of Catholics are effectively little “u” unionists. I was talking to several at last night’s Queens University Association London event, where I was speaking on this matter. But big U ethnic unionism will exclude them and force them back into ethnic nationalism.
The project was never about lining up the Conservative party alongside ethnic Unionism, but about replacing political structures based on constitutional and national issues, with politics based on social and economic issues using the same party structures that operate elsewhere in the UK. Incidentally for this we need the participation of Labour as well as the Conservatives. Between them Catholics can be offered something better than SF to vote for.

Reg, are you listening? Trimble’s may be a vision of political nirvana nationalists may deplore but at least it’s a vision.

Former BBC journalist and manager in Belfast, Manchester and London, Editor Spolight; Political Editor BBC NI; Current Affairs Commissioning editor BBC Radio 4; Editor Political and Parliamentary Programmes, BBC Westminster; former London Editor Belfast Telegraph. Hon Senior Research Fellow, The Constitution Unit, Univ Coll. London