So Eamonn McCann thinks David Cameron is playing the Orange Card when it comes to the DUP:
The fact that Cameron could arrange a hail-fellow-well-met get-together with the DUP in his garden on the evening when he knew that the Sinn Féin leader would be under interrogation suggests his anxiety to secure DUP support to stay on as prime minister overrides other considerations about the North.
This doesn’t mean the timing of Adams’s arrest was designed to harm Sinn Féin at the polls. That is almost certainly not so. It does mean that British political leaders are as ready as ever when it suits them to play the Orange card.
Brian Feeney was concerned in yesterday’s Irish News that cosying up to the DUP would disturb the British PM’s ‘impartiality’ when it comes to Northern Ireland.
In fact, much like any future Irish government that includes Sinn Fein there are certain safeguards over devolved powers which means that short of a major constitutional crisis there is little direct influence Westminster or Leinster House can exert over Stormont.
In a political situation in which both the DUP and Sinn Fein could play a major king making role after the next British and Irish general elections we can expect both parties to exert as much ‘undue’ influence as they can.
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