Eoghan Harris has taken to railing against the Irish Independent and RTE for not adopting a sufficiently anti-republican tone to their reports and interviews in the Presidential election campaign to date. Harris lambasts the Irish Independent for making an “extraordinary error of judgement” by allowing “northern nationalist” Martina Devlin to pen an article for the paper (linked by Mick in this post), comparing the historically anti-republican Indo to ‘An Phoblacht.’
Harris then attacks RTE and the Irish Independent for conspiring to produce a ‘moral fog’ around McGuinness, stating that this “confirmed my fears that the Weimar combination of economic recession and political myth-making are creating the conditions for the triumph of a nationalist-socialist movement like Sinn Fein.”
The zealously anti-republican Harris was responsible for the ‘tribal time bomb’ charge against Mary McAleese in 1997, a time when few public figures would have regarded being linked with Sinn Fein in any manner as being advantageous or beneficial to their cause.
How times have changed. So far during this election campaign, the following figures have all publicly endorsed Martin McGuinness’ campaign and/ or allowed themselves to be associated with the veteran republican figure: Colm Meaney, Fionnuala Flanagan, Roddy Collins, Peter Sheridan, Stephen Kenny, Peter Canavan and Eamon Dunphy, whilst both the Rev. David Latimer and Fr Michael Canny attended the Derry launch of his campaign.
There’s little doubt but that Martin McGuinness has got the celebrity nod in this election, for what that’s worth.
In electoral terms, very little I’d imagine.
But in terms of illustrating how far removed from the margins of Irish electoral politics Sinn Fein are today, it is a significant indicator.
Little wonder Eoghan’s so vexed….
Hit the bunker Eoghan, Ireland’s changing!