Friday, 22 June 2018

"I Never Thought I'd See The Day"

Thus do certain of the Consett Irish begin to tell me that their cousins will now be voting for the DUP because of abortion, and that they themselves would do the same. They then add that they will in fact be voting for me. And I have known them for a long time. They are not buttering me up.

But then, we never thought we'd see the day when Sinn Féin would be in coalition with the DUP, something that is now accepted as the natural order, with the present situation as aberrant. We never thought we'd see the day when a coalition was on the brink of being formed between Sinn Féin and Fine Gael, which is if anything an even more improbable partner than the DUP.

Power-sharing in Northern Ireland will have to be restored at some point, and when it is, then it will always be between Sinn Féin and whichever Unionist party was larger, which is going to be the DUP for a long time yet. If they came to be more evenly matched, then power-sharing would always be between Sinn Féin and whichever of the Unionist parties offered it the better deal.

Meanwhile, if not from the forthcoming Dáil elections then certainly from the next ones, the Taoiseach will be the Leader of whichever of Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil offered the better deal to Sinn Féin, the Leader of which will presumably hold the position of Tánaiste in perpetuity.

For all practical purposes, the 32 County Republic of 1916 will then exist, with those who still proclaimed its sovereignty effectively exercising the same across every inch of Ireland. But where, exactly, do they hold that that sovereignty now resides?

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