Owen Paterson: No popular demand for a border poll…

Owen Paterson, it seems, is not exactly inundated with letters, phone calls and emails looking for a border poll of the type Martin McGuinness was musing on a few weeks back…

Last year, 73 per cent of respondents to an opinion poll in Northern Ireland said they wanted the region to remain a part of the UK. The Life and Times survey published in June 2011 found 52 per cent of Catholics living in Northern Ireland wanted the union to continue, compared with a third who favoured a united Ireland.

Yeah, well, maybe Martin, contra his own advice, was getting carried away with all the talk of referenda in Scotland, and was looking to add a handy piece of psychological pressure to Micheal Martin in the south with talk of bigger, more meaningful subjects than giving constitutional effect to a fiscal compact the govt has largely already signed up to?

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