DUP Split

From the BBC “DUP members in quit threat. The soap opera gets stranger from day to day…

“After Monday’s meeting, party sources said Mr Robinson was seeking unanimous support for a deal before moving ahead.
It is believed the meeting was stormy, with a secret ballot ending in a 60/40 split in favour of the proposals. ”

I wonder who leaked this and why?

  • fpveritas

    I am only suprised that the split was soon long in coming

    I blame the TUV and the upcoming election

  • joeCanuck

    If he is truly waiting for unanimous support he might as well go on the stage with Vladimir and Estragon.

  • Henry94

    So they don’t think 60:40 should rule?

  • joeCanuck

    On Twitter, Eamonn says that Alex Maskey says that SF are not offering anything to help Robinson with his difficulties.
    And why would they after the way Robinson has treated them?
    Should be an interesting Assembly election soon.

  • Alias

    “It is believed the meeting was stormy, with a secret ballot ending in a 60/40 split in favour of the proposals.”

    If it’s true, then it shows that the leader is acting against the best interests of his party. The only reason he would do that is if he was being coerced by, say, the British state linking a successful conclusion of the ongoing P&J devolution saga to a successful conclusion of its inquiry into the its broadcasting service’s allegation that he breached the Ministerial Code… or some other form of blackmail.

    Probably their best move is to recognise that their party leader is compromised; refuse to deal on terms that are not in their party’s best interests, and then dump the leader.

  • If the DUP say no, will the Governments plan be published and will the UUP move into the centre ground and agree to its terms? This may be a real chance for he UUP to seize the initative back from the DUP.

    If not, it will surely be embarassing for the Bullingdon Boys Club (Tories) to have an electoral pact with an anti-agreement UUP.

  • joeCanuck

    The longer they string this out the greater is the danger that the press will successfully get the super-injunction lifted blowing everything apart.

  • NornIroner

    I think that Eamonn Mallie is, perhaps, overplaying Maskey’s comment about ‘helping Peter Robinson’ out. I actually watched that interview on Stormont Live and I didn’t get that impression, only that the deal was good for Sinn Fein. I don’t think Maskey really made a comment on ‘helping Robinson’ out or trying to get him out of a tight jam – only that clarification would be given on the issues of concern to the DUP. I think that Eamonn, like many in the media this week including Stephen Nolan, is overplaying this issue, which is playing on the public’s frustration and bleak perception of the negotiations. The issues being debated by all parties are undoubtedly complex – and complex issues need time for debate and clarity.

    Just as a note, I am apolitical and not a DUP supporter.

  • gmacor

    We had to wait many years for Sinn Fein to reach an agreed way forward. They lost some support in the process. Give the DUP some time to reach the same point. They will also loose some on the way but for goodness sake the extremes have to live also. So what is the kerfuffle,get over it.

  • The Impartial Observer

    Didn’t Trimble used to win UUC meetings with a 60/40 split? Why would Robbo be so desperate to have unanimity? Is he afraid that some big names could jump ship?

    Had a good laugh listening to Martina Purdy pick apart Doddsie’s attempt to deny that yesterday’s meeting was a shambles for Robbo, he claimed that no vote was taken on Robbo’s leadership something that the Beeb never claimed!

    You could also hear the glee in Alex Maskey’s voice, match point to the Shinners!

  • Ulick

    Gad, would somebody please pull the plug on the whole sorry mess. A deal is never going to happen with unionism of all sorts in such disarray. A fresh election is the best thing for all sides.

  • The issues being debated by all parties are undoubtedly complex – and complex issues need time for debate and clarity.

    Ahhhhha, run that by me again.

    By the way hows Jeffrey Donaldson doing these days, no wonder Trimble is feeling chirpy.

  • FriarsBush

    Is it a case of the Turkeys not voting for Christmas when it comes to the DUP.?……no matter what…..dinner will be served!..and its getting colder.

  • Framer

    Half of the DUP MLAs are there by virtue of being in one or other non-mainstream church. Inevitably their unrepresentative nature is going to catch up with them when compromise is required.

    And Iris certainly did not help.

  • joeCanuck

    Does anyone remember when Wee Jeffrey was against gagging orders; at least in the case of the gag on Martin Ingram.

  • If the UUP could get themselves out of their Orange bunker and enjoy the sunlight they would notice that there is large swathe of middle ground totally unoccupied by Unionism.

    Reginald, perhaps your day may have arrived after all.

  • Flip

    So could anyone fill me in on this. Hypothetically speaking, if there is a super injunction in place:

    a. what grounds would be needed to indicate that information should not be made public

    b. what grounds would be needed to have it lifted

    Hypothetically speaking of course.

  • joeCanuck

    Don’t know about a. It just couldn’t be to prevent a public figure from embarrassment, could it? I would personally make a distinction between a public person and a private citizen, who should be entitled to privacy.
    In the case of b., I think the Judge who lifted the order protecting Terry said that the details were widely known anyway in the football world and so the injunction served no purpose.

  • Greenflag

    Half a party half a party
    Half a party onward,
    Into the valley of political abyss
    Rode the 15
    ‘Forward, the men from the past !
    Charge for the hustings ‘ they said:
    Into the valley of election
    Rode the fifteen .

    ‘Forward, the Fifteen !’
    Was there a man dismay’d ?
    Not tho’ anyone knew
    Some one had blunder’d: (guess who)
    Theirs not to make reply,
    Theirs not to reason why,
    Theirs but to walk away
    Into the valley of the abyss
    Leapt the fifteen .

    TUV to right of them,
    SF to the left of them,
    UCUNF in front of them
    Laughed at and & jeered ;
    Mocked at with ribald tale ,
    Boldly they kept their cool ,
    Into the jaws of their constituencies ,
    Into the mouth of an election
    Rode the Fifteen

    Flash’d all their policies bare,
    Flash’d as they trode on air
    Skewering the Shinners here ,
    Charging the SDLP there
    While the world wonder’d:
    Plunged into political smoke
    Right thro’ the DUP they broke;
    SF & SDLP & UCUNF joke
    Reel’d from their master stroke,
    Shatter’d & sunder’d.
    Then they rode back, but not
    Not the fifteen .

    TUV to right of them,
    SF to left of them,
    DUP behind them
    Damned at and thunder’d;
    Jeered at with mocking tale
    While politcal careers fail ,
    They that had campaigned so well
    Came thro’ the jaws of the GFA ,
    Back from the mouth of St Andrews
    All that was left of them,
    The heroic fifteen

    When can their glory fade?
    O the wild charge they made!
    All the world wonder’d.
    Honoured the noise they made!
    Honoured the no no never Brigade,
    Noble warriors of NO !

    with apologies to Alfred Lord Tennyson

  • Drumlins Rock

    think we all deserve an apology for that greenflag

  • villager

    The DUP should wind itself up. The GFA for slow learners brigade should join the UUP and the rest can go off with Allister.

  • Flip


    It’s interesting that the law seems to say get it out there on the web somehow and then the law can do nothing about it?

    Any chance of a superinjunction against all poetry on this site…

  • Kevsterino

    So the law shields public figures from press inquiry for the sake of ????

    Christ on a bike!!!

  • Bad Billy

    The DUP are falling apart and I believe we will see this split open up in the coming weeks. Some of the DUPs leading lights have been very quiet in recent weeks. Very little has been seen and even less heard of Jeffery Donaldson and William McCrea. Why don’t they just come out and tell us what they think.

  • Drumlins Rock

    Jeffrey is jsut doing his usual, see which way the wind is blowing and follow the crowd, problem is no-one really wants him anymore.
    As for Free Willie, his Lordship, Lundundiry, & Co of the old brigade, they probably look on with envy at the TUV but are so ingrained in the DUP it would amount to an amputation to leave.
    Wonder who Daddy & Junior sided with?

  • Greenflag

    drumlin’s rock ,

    You have a point – All right lads -GF apologises for besmirching the fine politicians of the DUP via the poetic license of doggerel ;(

  • Cynic2

    BBC reported that our Great Leader called Reg tonight to seek his support in keeping the Executive afloat and getting the deal through.

    Now just who foresaw this possibility and paved the way for it at Hatfield?

    Can we now expect Alistair McDonnell to be back in the sectarian electoral gutter tomorrow criticising Labour for breaking the bipartisan policy on Northern Ireland by not calling him as well and not having him present during the phone call? Thought not.

  • Bad Billy

    It’s strange that none of our TV and Radio presenters actually ask anyone from the DUP “why wasn’t Jeffery Donaldson part of your negotiating team”? Or “Whys Jeffery in the background and not on the media”? Or even just “What’s Jeffery Donaldson’s views on the talks”? It’s as if they have forgotten all about him.

  • The Impartial Observer

    The DUP was always a pretty implausible coalition between the hard core “Never! Never! Never!” brigade and more secular people who were just disatisfied with British policy in NI and saw the party as a vehicle for protest. Paisley held the whole lot together through force of personality and a sense of common purpose, but now the common purpose is gone and Robbo hasn’t the charisma to lead like Paisley, in any case Iris’ antics have underminded his authority, so it was inevitable that a parting of the ways would happen sooner rather than later.

    I heard from a well connected colleague in the Civil Service today that the mandarins have been told to prepare for the return of direct rule, this is probably just the usual contingency planning but it shows that the collapse of the Assembly is a serious prospect.

  • percy

    Robinson has to face the naysayers down now, as giving in to them
    will only delay the day when this has to be done all over again.
    that’ll make for groundhog year!

  • Cletus The Slack Jawed Yokel

    The DUP is dvided but then I suspect both parties will have refusniks. The reality os that the DUP have little to gain out of the proposed deal.

    The 60-40 looks remarkably rounded though doesnt it?

    As regards snap elections, dont bet on it. There is every possibility of suspension with the powers falling to a local department with new miniter parachuted in from Westminster.

    The result will be de-facto devolution all ready for a local minister to take over when its sorted out.

    What surprises me more is that so few people have mentioned the desperate playing of Gordon Brown coming up with a devolution date of May 4th, mere hours before the likely election date.

    Touny Blair’s ego and desire for legacy left us with the hash of the GFA and the hash of St Andrews with either side of the divide feeling done by the outworkings of each.

    Lets try to avoid that again.

  • Cletus The Slack Jawed Yokel

    Defacto devolution of P&J I mean….

  • georgieleigh

    nice one henry94

    Are the 40% minority happy to accept majority rule on the issue, or are they demanding power-sharing?

  • percy

    Cletus I think you’re smoking hash cara
    and there’s nothing wrong with that its hard to beat

  • FitzjamesHorse

    I think there is a difference between taking a minority view within a Party and being a refuse-nik.
    With 14 or 15 in DUP saying no to this particular raft of proposals, its difficult to see how Robbo can go back to them tonight with proposals so radically changed that ALL 14 or 15 will sign up. Much more likely that 10 or 12 will sign up and 2 or 3 will be refuse-niks.
    Of course Robbo going back to SF and saying “give me some crumbs lads to take back to the parliamentary party” is humiliating for him (as if he hasnt suffered enough lately) so Sinn Féin are unlikely to accomodate him.
    If he cant deliver his own party then a election IS required.

  • ardmaj55

    villager [21]Wouldn’t it be brilliant if Paisley survived long enough to see his creation wiped out in westminster, stormont and councils and discredited in his own community. it would be a fitting epitaph to a career covered in ignominy, corruption, nepotism, freeloading and bigotry and political demise. The TUV wouldn’t last much longer after the Death of the DUP, although the UUP would remain.and the Free Ps would follow them into oblivion. Then N. Ireland could start to come out of the dark ages.

  • Cletus The Slack Jawed Yokel

    Percy. If theres anything in my points you want to contend go ahead.

  • joeCanuck

    When is a deadline not a deadline?
    Any ideas, Pete B?

  • ardmaj55

    Cletus [7] I’ve just remembered to ask, does P&J stand alone in the Agreement structures, from the Stormont set up?,because it would be a painful irony for Robbo and Co if the P&J was transferred here, after Stormont was closed for good and Direct Rule restored. After all the effort the duppers put into getting P&J delayed. This gang of freeloaders shouldn’t be let anywhere near power ever again.

  • alan56

    Ref Jeffrey Donaldson.
    It is hard to understand why media are not asking why he is no longer in the negotiating tema inner circle. Surely at a time when splits and disagreements are mentioned this is a perfectly legitimate and relevent question?

  • Medillen

    Because the media all know why already, and are waiting for the actual story to break by the paper that has the ammo, and so as not to leave themselves on the wrong side of a lawsuit.

  • alan56

    Surely you can,t be on the wrong side of a lawsuit by simply asking why he is not part of the negotiating team…. or is that what we are now reduced to by the law?

  • west belfast

    If there is a legal injunction etc does the John Terry ruling have any implications?

    Anyway its death by smear – this is what he will now be remembered for – kinda feel sorry for him. Dont know why.

  • Medillen

    Alan, that story will another days multitude of threads soon enough, I think.

    Back to the topic at hand, I think Robbo has to, very soon, do a back me or sack me proposal. With the sack me option meaning an assembly election with a leaderless DUP, enough to make a few think twice, whouldn’t you think?

  • joeCanuck

    does the John Terry ruling have any implications?

    Nope; none whatsover. Except to know that application can be successfully made to lift any injunction.

  • alan56

    Robbo should put it up to the dissenters. Will they fight their corner and go for an election or will they think about the implications and back down…for now. Either way there will be a residue of resentment in the ranks of DUP

  • fin

    “…….do a back me or sack me proposal…….” coupled with Iris’s mental state does this become a “back, crack and sack” scenario

  • Medillen

    West Belfast,

    Save your pity, the higher the pedestal that you erect for yourself, the bigger the fall when the truth catches up with you. Death by the Sundays beckons.

  • Comrade Stalin


    The reality os that the DUP have little to gain out of the proposed deal.

    Off the top of my head :

    – keeping devolution up, which avoids direct rule and the attendant problems for Unionism it usually creates, as well as joint authority of course

    – DUP MLAs and constituency workers being kept in a job

    – avoiding an assembly election ahead of time; avoiding going into a Westminster election having failed at the talks table;

    – capitalizing on a deal which ensures that SF can say little other than that they have negotiated P+J devolution. SF get almost nothing else from it. They’ve already got input into the police on the Police Board.

    Those all look like good reasons to seize the moment to me.

  • FitzjamesHorse

    The link from Wikipedia to Jeffreys Official Website appears to be broken.

  • FitzjamesHorse

    I tend to agree.
    This message board has a reputation of having its finger on the pulse of whats happening in Norn Iron politics.
    And a lot of “amateur bloggers” have raised the quite legitimate question “wheres Jeffrey?”.
    If the amateurs notice it….discuss it even speculate, I really cant understand why the professional journalists constrain themselves.

    They could…to coin a phrase…put the story to bed……by simply saying “theres nothing in the air”.
    Not easy for journos to say NOTHING.
    Are we to believe that their silence on this subject is in fact speaking volumes.

  • Alias

    “I think Robbo has to, very soon, do a back me or sack me proposal. With the sack me option meaning an assembly election with a leaderless DUP, enough to make a few think twice, whouldn’t you think?”

    Not at all. The deputy leader, Nigel Dodds, would assume the role, pending an election for party leader, say, three months after the Assembly election. In fact, there is no reason why the DUP could not elect a new leader in a matter of days since all it takes is a vote among Assembly members and ratification of their selection by the DUP’s executive committee.

  • Drumlins Rock

    where does Doddy fall? in the 60% or the 40% ?

    How about have some fun and working out who the 15 are? lol,

    will start with Gregory, Lord M, McCrea, x2, Simpson… agree or disagree? and guess the rest!

  • Alias

    I think the notion that the DUP are going to fragment is misguided. That would only realistically occur if Robinson allowed majority rule. 😉

    The dynamic, as I see it, is that unionists feel that they need a monolith at this time, so that means they’ll vote for whichever party is likely to be the biggest, thereby ensuring that it has muscle in any future talks with the government if the system fails.

    Isn’t that the dynamic that Blair used to make what are now the two biggest parties into the two biggest parties – the fear that one tribe would get more sweeties from the state than the other if that tribe voted for hardliners and the other didn’t?

  • Bad Billy

    BBC spotlights just on and still no Jeffery. Sammy Wilson seems to have taken his place on the media. It’s strange to say the least how silent the entire media are about Jeffery Donaldson. I mean he was very high profile and always on the TV and radio one of the DUPs most experienced negotiators. He just disappears of the scene and the media show no interest. William McCrea has also been very low profile and hasn’t been saying much.

  • Drumlins Rock

    has he been singing?

  • joeCanuck


    Try this:

  • Bad Billy

    Dont know how the negotiations will turn out at Hillsbourgh and if the DUP will split but they may be sailing their ship into uncertain waters.

  • FitzjamesHorse

    Drumlins Rock,
    I named these usual suspects on another thread and added Moutray because he doesnt do anything that Simpson doesnt aprove.
    Probably Wells.
    And Id be suspicious of McCausland as he might have said YES in English and NO in Ulster Scots.

  • FitzjamesHorse

    With UTV live (10.35pm) referencing Donaldson walking out on the GFA, they surprisingly failed to mention his recent invisibility.
    Neither did Clifford Smyth and Darwin Templeton.

    Odd very odd.

  • Comrade Stalin

    Doesn’t Peter still have all those post dated resignation letters ?

  • Mrazik

    BBC spotlights just on and still no Jeffery. Sammy Wilson seems to have taken his place on the media. It’s strange to say the least how silent the entire media are about Jeffery Donaldson. I mean he was very high profile and always on the TV and radio one of the DUPs most experienced negotiators. He just disappears of the scene and the media show no interest. William McCrea has also been very low profile and hasn’t been saying much.

    Posted by Bad Billy on Feb 02, 2010 @ 10:42 PM

    Ah, sure wee Jeffrey’s just digging the foundations of the new John Lewis store at Sprucefield. Doin’ his bit for our economic recovery and all that. I also hear they do excellent gift lists.

  • Flip
  • Drumlins Rock

    Wells is an interesting case, gifted politician and very much his own man, rumours of him being tempted by the TUV have being going around since before the Euros, he would be a good catch for Jim, the rest would be more trouble than they are worth.

  • Bad Billy

    If there is a split in the DUP and Robinson is overthrown who would take over? Heres an interesting article on just that –


  • Drumlins Rock

    Billy thats bad!!! 🙂

  • FitzjamesHorse

    I quite like Jim Wells.
    Very sound on Ornithology. There cant be too many of us.

    As for the Spotlight thing. Too much even for an anorak like me.
    Who are these eejits in the audience with their “why dont you get on with it?” attitude to the politicians.
    And of course those pathetic no-marks giving us the benefit of their twitter stuff…..on a strap accross the bottom of the screen.
    they are almost as bad as bloggers.

    there is a peculiar denial with the great and the good (journos, academics, bloggers) and of course audiences and phone-in idiots……that they are intellectually or morally superior to our politicians.

    Truth is of course….they voted for them.
    Some will say oh no……..”I am much too intelligent to vote”……well of course you are but not intelligent enough to provide an alternative.

  • Garza

    Wee Jeff has been spotted. Was on BBC Radio Ulster this morning.

    His excuse for not being at the talks was that he didn’t want do double-job, he had other work to do. Yeah right, when have the DUP or wee Jeff ever been shy of double-jobbing.

  • ardmaj55

    FJH [17] Talking about the spotlight debate. The second question was about whether the OO should have such influence o the talks. Carruthers let Sammy Wilson off the hook. At no point during the 15 minutes given to that section of the programme was SW confronted with and made to answer the question and the person in the audience wasn’t consulted again as to whether he was satisfied with the answer he got. Pathetic.