Durkan welcomes Fianna Fail Northern move

I have got a new post up at OurKingdom about Fianna Fail’s plans to organise in the North.

Since I wrote it, there have been a couple of notable developments.

Foreign Affairs Minister
Mr Ahern said: "We wouldn`t be interested in going to the House of
Commons as a political party. That is for others to do. We feel we
should have representation in Northern Ireland as a political party. (UTV)

El Blogador has picked up a very significant press release from SDLP leader Mark Durkan:

We welcome today’s announcement and look forward to continuing our
engagement with Fianna Fáil through Dermot Ahern’s new working group,
where we will set out our vision of the future development of national
politics. As a true republican party, we believe that the social and
economic interests of the people of the entire island are best served
by ever-deepening cooperation between North and South. We anticipate a
healthy and forward-looking debate as a means to forging a new
political path for the whole country. (El Blogador)

The Irish Times has a useful round-up of party reactions in the North. The DUP and the Ulster Unionists have responded in accordance with their respective roles within unionism.

As the representative of the larger party, Jeffrey Donaldson sees the glass as half full, predicting that Fianna Fail will split the nationalist vote. Sir Reg Empey takes a more negative view, perhaps partly because this development is occuring on the DUP’s watch.

Martin Ferris welcomed the news for Sinn Fein. Their part in bringing about all-Ireland politics reminds me of the SDLP’s role in the peace process. Both parties were compelled by their own raison d’etre to embark on a course that carried with it an intrinsic threat to their electoral position. It remains to be seen whether the result will be similar.






Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *