Has Foster reached the 'Trimble Tipping Point Moment'?

McSlaggart

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A DUP friend texted me on Thursday morning, wondering if I thought Arlene Foster had reached what he wonderfully described as the "David Trimble Tipping Point Moment".

It's a question which former UUP member Foster would understand, because she had previously been one of the party members suggesting that he stand aside for the sake and unity of the party.

Had he stepped down in the spring/early summer of 2003 (he hung on for another two years) it is possible that Jeffrey Donaldson would have replaced him and a generation of younger party members, including Foster, would have stayed in the UUP and probably deprived the DUP of its top-dog role.


I do not see what difference it will make if the DUP change its leadership? The question the DUP needs to address is the border in the Irish sea and how it addresses the pressures it unleashed in Brexit for things being increasingly on an Island wide basis.
 


Dame_Enda

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It is unprecedented to have a DUP rebellion on this scale, though it should be noted that they abstained rather than voting against the new ministerial rules, which say that issues dont need to be brought before the executive by a minister if they are only "incidental". The argument by supporters of the change was that the rules had held up approval of I think an incinerator? The North Belfast waste dump issue arguably strengthens the case for the change.

Of course opponents of the change such as Ben Lowry and Sam McBride of the Newsletter might argue the old rules were a check on SF ministers. A particular issue mentioned on BBC was when Martin McGuinness abolished the 11 plus test for academic selection in 2008, which caused a backlash from Unionist parties and grammar schools. That seems to have been a factor in the restrictions being introducd by the St.Andrews Agreement. Incidentally, since 2016 the Tory direct rule administration had been sneaking the 11 plus back in, so SF shot themselves in the foot on that one.

 
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Fullforward

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I've long suspected that the final act of this tedious drama would be a short, ugly and brutal squalid little Loyalist mini-civil-war as they burn themselves on a bonfire of nihilistic despair.
Hopefully. Early shots in that episode are happening between the Mount Vernon drug lords and their Shankill Road comrades.
 

McSlaggart

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It is unprecedented to have a DUP rebellion on this scale, though it should be noted that they abstained rather than voting against the new ministerial rules, which say that issues dont need to be brought before the executive by a minister if they are only "incidental". The argument by supporters of the change was that the rules had held up approval of I think an incinerator? The North Belfast waste dump issue arguably strengthens the case for the change.

Of course opponents of the change such as Ben Lowry and Sam McBride of the Newsletter might argue the old rules were a check on SF ministers. A particular issue mentioned on BBC was when Martin McGuinness abolished the 11 plus test for academic selection in 2008, which caused a backlash from Unionist parties and grammar schools. That seems to have been a factor in the restrictions being introducd by the St.Andrews Agreement. Incidentally, since 2016 the Tory direct rule administration had been sneaking the 11 plus back in, so SF shot themselves in the foot on that one.


The DUP main problem is Brexit and its natural out-workings. The fact that they supported the political change in spite of everyone warning that it would damage their position in the Union does not make it any easier.
 

Mickeymac

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The DUP main problem is Brexit and its natural out-workings. The fact that they supported the political change in spite of everyone warning that it would damage their position in the Union does not make it any easier.

They need to listen to the Professor Michael Duggan interview with Elish Rooney about Brexit and the Onion.😂
 

McSlaggart

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It is unprecedented to have a DUP rebellion on this scale,

The DUP are not a well controlled machine :


So you wait around for ages for a DUP split and then two come along at once.

The first - already the subject of copious amounts of analysis - came at the start of the week with the abstention of 11 MLAs on a bill which clarifies the power of individual Stormont ministers.

The second - at the end of the week - played out over Twitter and was rather less theoretical.

Instead, two leading female DUP politicians decided to take on mask refusenik Sammy Wilson over his disdain for face coverings.

To extend our bus metaphor, the dispute over the Executive Committee Functions Bill is a bit of a magical mystery tour.

No one is precisely sure of the destination or how long the journey might take.

If former DUP adviser Richard Bullick is correct and the new law enables Sinn Féin ministers to engage on solo runs on policies which prove anathema to unionists, then Arlene Foster could be in trouble.

But if not, the leader will be able to stick to her line that it's a summer story blown out of proportion and she can calm her assembly troops with a few reassuring chats.


 

Dame_Enda

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The DUP main problem is Brexit and its natural out-workings. The fact that they supported the political change in spite of everyone warning that it would damage their position in the Union does not make it any easier.
Im quite sure many Unionists voted for Brexit in the hope it would harden the border and deepen partition. However they underestimated Irish and EU resistance to this. 38% of Northern Protestants voted Remain, likely seeing that that Brexit would open a Pandora's Box.
 

Mickeymac

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Im quite sure many Unionists voted for Brexit in the hope it would harden the border and deepen partition. However they underestimated Irish and EU resistance to this. 38% of Northern Protestants voted Remain, likely seeing that that Brexit would open a Pandora's Box.

Quite an accurate assessment Dame👍
 

devonish

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Im quite sure many Unionists voted for Brexit in the hope it would harden the border and deepen partition. However they underestimated Irish and EU resistance to this. 38% of Northern Protestants voted Remain, likely seeing that that Brexit would open a Pandora's Box.
The theory that many unionists voted Brexit to harden the border only emerged post Brexit, I genuinely do not recall this being put forward as a reason to vote Brexit prior to the referendum so would be interested in any evidence you have to support this view. As for those from a protestant background voting remain, the simplest explanation is often the most likely, that they wished to remain in the EU.
 

Mickeymac

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The theory that many unionists voted Brexit to harden the border only emerged post Brexit, I genuinely do not recall this being put forward as a reason to vote Brexit prior to the referendum so would be interested in any evidence you have to support this view. As for those from a protestant background voting remain, the simplest explanation is often the most likely, that they wished to remain in the EU.

You be be a kind of a funny guy at times Dev, are you denying the promise of the “360 mile” wall and a border as hard as a hookers heart if you vote Brexit?

Anyways, ain’t you the guy who cycled past loyalist paramilitary flags and denied they were present.
 

McSlaggart

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The theory that many unionists voted Brexit to harden the border only emerged post Brexit, I genuinely do not recall this being put forward as a reason to vote Brexit prior to the referendum so would be interested in any evidence you have to support this view. As for those from a protestant background voting remain, the simplest explanation is often the most likely, that they wished to remain in the EU.
"

After the referendum, Northern Ireland’s DUP confirmed receiving £435,000 from the shadowy Constitutional Research Council (CRC).

Although the cash was given to the DUP, most of it was spent on the mainland.


Cook, a failed Scottish Tory candidate who owns a modest semi-detached home in Clarkston, was revealed as chair of the CRC, an unincorporated association.

He refused to say who provided the cash to the CRC and the donation was the focus of media investigations.

Geoghegan has devoted a chapter of his new book on British politics - ‘Democracy for Sale’ - to the Cook row.

He described the £435,000 donation as “probably the most blatant example of dark money in recent electoral politics”."



The DUP supported Brexit and the UUP officially against Brexit did not stop its leading politicians supporting it. A view in nationalism is that unionism supported Brexit as they thought that it would put a hard border between the north and south of the Island.
 

mangaire2

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The theory that many unionists voted Brexit to harden the border only emerged post Brexit, I genuinely do not recall this being put forward as a reason to vote Brexit prior to the referendum so would be interested in any evidence you have to support this view. As for those from a protestant background voting remain, the simplest explanation is often the most likely, that they wished to remain in the EU.
wasn't one of the core objectives of the Brexiteers, the taking back control of the borders of the UK ?
if they could have achieved that, there would be a hard border between the 6 & 26 Counties of Ireland.
wouldn't that have been a hard core Unionist's dream ?
 

McSlaggart

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So you wait around for ages for a DUP split and then two come along at once.

The first - already the subject of copious amounts of analysis - came at the start of the week with the abstention of 11 MLAs on a bill which clarifies the power of individual Stormont ministers.

The second - at the end of the week - played out over Twitter and was rather less theoretical.

Instead, two leading female DUP politicians decided to take on mask refusenik Sammy Wilson over his disdain for face coverings.

To extend our bus metaphor, the dispute over the Executive Committee Functions Bill is a bit of a magical mystery tour.

No one is precisely sure of the destination or how long the journey might take.

If former DUP adviser Richard Bullick is correct and the new law enables Sinn Féin ministers to engage on solo runs on policies which prove anathema to unionists, then Arlene Foster could be in trouble.

But if not, the leader will be able to stick to her line that it's a summer story blown out of proportion and she can calm her assembly troops with a few reassuring chats.

 

Mickeymac

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So you wait around for ages for a DUP split and then two come along at once.

The first - already the subject of copious amounts of analysis - came at the start of the week with the abstention of 11 MLAs on a bill which clarifies the power of individual Stormont ministers.

The second - at the end of the week - played out over Twitter and was rather less theoretical.

Instead, two leading female DUP politicians decided to take on mask refusenik Sammy Wilson over his disdain for face coverings.

To extend our bus metaphor, the dispute over the Executive Committee Functions Bill is a bit of a magical mystery tour.

No one is precisely sure of the destination or how long the journey might take.

If former DUP adviser Richard Bullick is correct and the new law enables Sinn Féin ministers to engage on solo runs on policies which prove anathema to unionists, then Arlene Foster could be in trouble.

But if not, the leader will be able to stick to her line that it's a summer story blown out of proportion and she can calm her assembly troops with a few reassuring chats.


Many more splits to come as the referendum nears sir.👍
 


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