Why won’t candidates slug it out in public?

The two leadership contenders are on Hearts and Minds tomorrow night. The party hierarchy are afraid of division, apparently (also helps to fill out the time). The SDLP were just the same.

In fact the last time anyone was prepared to was to thrash out matters in public was Alliance in 2001 in the Ford/Bell contest…

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