Whatever you do don’t mess with the Press Office…

In an interview with Diana Rusk in the Irish News on Wednesday, Noel Thompson had some interesting comments to make on the tetchiness less of politicians, than of their minders and their press officers.

We haven’t been able to get Martin McGuinness for months now – in fact since the interview I did before his presidential campaign,” he said.

I wouldn’t care to say whether or not Mr McGuinness himself has said I am not doing Hearts and Minds, because he has been perfectly civil when I’ve seen him, but certainly the impression we had from the press office is that they were unhappy with that interview and they haven’t make him available for us since – although we ask almost every week.

It’s shame we can’t find the original #Aras11 interview. Though Slugger understand this is one explanation as to why, having said he would take part in the last ever Hearts and Minds, Gerry Kelly who is officially (and unofficially) afraid of no man, mysteriously pulled out at the last minute…

Hell hath no fury, etc, etc, etc…

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