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Well done May.

In terms of internal Tory politics, it's a win.
In terms of UK public opinion, it's probably a win too.

In terms of keeping the UK on its delusional suicidal trajectory to the cliff edge, it's a triumph.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Wed Jan 30th, 2019 at 11:19:46 AM EST
It will also feed into the Brexiteer narrative of plucky Briton facing down the big, bad, inflexible EU.

Little matter that the EU is acting largely to protect the interests of a much smaller member state, Ireland, and the voiceless nationalist community in N. Ireland. Sinn Fein is coming in for a lot of criticism in Ireland for its abstentionist policy in Westminster which means that DUP politicians can claim, without blushing, to be speaking on behalf of both communities in N. Ireland.

Sinn Fein's 7 MPs in Westminster may or may not make a crucial difference to the numbers game in Westminster if they took their seats, but it would certainly change the media narrative currently dominated by the DUP.

Index of Frank's Diaries

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Wed Jan 30th, 2019 at 11:51:55 AM EST
[ Parent ]
... the voiceless nationalist community in N. Ireland. Sinn Fein is coming in for a lot of criticism in Ireland for its abstentionist policy in Westminster...

I can understand that the oath of allegiance to the UK Crown, that a sitting MP is required to take, is an impossible act for an Irish Republican representative. This has the unfortunate consequences of loss of voice that you describe.

Apart from the Lambeg Drum Beat of the DUP, we hear far too little opinion from NI. Farming and business BBC programmes occasionally interview a very concerned spokesperson who expresses their concern cautiously as is required by their local politics.

Almost nothing is heard of the nationalist viewpoint. I find that concerning. Are nationalists keeping quiet and letting the Tories get on with destabilising the GFA or are their voices being ignored in the UK?

by oldremainmer48 on Wed Jan 30th, 2019 at 01:03:30 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Very much a case of their voices are being ignored in the UK. But I would also blame Sinn Fein Leader, Mary Lou McDonald, for being very Dublin centric and not doing the rounds of UK TV studios and newspaper interviews and articles more.

Leo Varadker has no track record on N. Ireland politics or policy, and yet is left to do almost all the heavy lifting.

Index of Frank's Diaries

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Wed Jan 30th, 2019 at 01:13:39 PM EST
[ Parent ]
There's also the issue that most of that 10% anti-EU vote in IE is probably voting Sinn Fein.
by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Wed Jan 30th, 2019 at 01:47:14 PM EST
[ Parent ]
They may not all love the EU, but the issue du jour is preventing the emergence of a hard border. Or isn't that SF policy anymore?

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Wed Jan 30th, 2019 at 03:24:30 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Is that right? Their MEPs seem... well-integrated (GUE-NGL). Is Sinn Fein officially anti-EU?

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II
by eurogreen on Wed Jan 30th, 2019 at 05:37:43 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I'm not taking about the representatives but a slice of their voters, including older relatives of mine*. It's like abortion: policy was in favour, but a chunk of their vote against which led to some rather strange contortions

* In at least one case because the EU is the vehicle of the antichrist.

by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Wed Jan 30th, 2019 at 06:31:02 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Sinn Fein opposed Ireland's entry to the EU and pretty much every referendum since then which devolved more sovereignty onto the EU. However that opposition softened over the years as Sinn Fein sought to become a mainstream party culminating in Sinn Fein campaigning for Remain in the 2016 UK Brexit referendum.

Even then there was some debate within the party and mixed feelings about supporting the Remain side - something Sinn Fein is rather coy about admitting now. With the DUP supporting Brexit, it had little choice but to support Remain as the issue became refracted by the sectarian divide in N.Ireland.

As a nationalist party it opposed European integration and as it moved leftward it increasingly embraced left wing critiques of the neo-liberalism, globalisation, and neo-imperialism of the EU.

But now Brexit has provided it with a stick to beat the DUP with and an opportunity to become part of a pro-EU majority in the North - almost as a proxy for a united Ireland. So prior opposition has been replaced by a muted scepticism, if not down right enthusiasm.

Past opposition to almost anything EU has been consigned to a memory hole.

Index of Frank's Diaries

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Thu Jan 31st, 2019 at 01:49:51 AM EST
[ Parent ]

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