So this morning, I am genuinely sorry to say, was another Sinn Fein car crash on Nolan. No doubt the party flaks will be giving him stick for being too harsh on Alex Maskey (usually a master of the talk over the interviewer technique).
Yet that would be wrong on so many levels. If ever there was a reflection of the absence of the party’s leadership from Northern Irish politics is this woeful display of anti knowledge.
I don’t know for sure if it was a deliberate attempt as Nolan accurately put it this morning to mislead the Northern Irish public. But the record shows that Sinn Fein have made cumulative error of £1 billion in their calculations over a three year period.
It looks for all the world like the party has sent in politician into the crease without a proper briefing. Not only that, more broadly this does appear to be a figure the party actually believed to be sound. If so, then what sort of reception could they expect in negotiations with the DUP?
It’s shows just how difficult it is to grow a presence in one place whilst maintaining a viable presence in another. I want to come to Dublin South West separately, but I was struck by this comment on Twitter from Squinter…
SF might have got to 24% with Fine Gael, but I suspect the by-election results show that electorally they’re fragile/ephemeral in Free State
— Squinter (@squinteratn) October 11, 2014
Ephemeral is not the word you would use about Sinn Fein in Northern Ireland, but when called to account for itself as it was this morning it is certainly a great deal more diaphanous than its outsize publicity claims. Check the website to find Nolan’s comprehensive working out…
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