Saturday, 11 December 2010

Sinn Fein's voters have a case to answer.

The whole row over tuition fees highlighted for me (though not for the mainstream press) that those who have elected Sinn Fein candidates to Westminister have condemmned the rest of the Northern Ireland electorate. Had Sinn Fein taken their seats at Westminister it is fair to say that that would have been another 5 no votes on Thursday night. Lookng back it wouldn't have been enough to prevent the legislation passing but prior to the vote it sure would have given the government a mighty headache. Governments do not like to be defeated and will negotiiate to the death to ensure they get the right result. 

We will never know what concessions Northern Ireland may have been able to secure had all 18 of our MP's been able to present a united front. It may have been nothing on this occasion but there will be others and once again, our position will be weakend by Sinn Fein.

I respect the right of Sinn Fein to exist and fight elections and also to sit in government. I also respect Sinn Fein's position of not taking up their seats at Westminister. They have been honest about that and the electorate decided that was acceptable to them. As such it is Sinn Fein's voters I hold to account. It is a selfish and spiteful vote to elect a representative that not only is entirely ineffective in that office but also condemns the rest of Northern Ireland to suffer a weakend negotiating position. Politicians will not often turn on the electorate but it's about time someone did.


  1. Pathetic.

    Much as I loathe Sinn Fein I can at least recognise that since the re-establishment of Stormont their position of not voting in Westminster is an honourable one. By what right should NI MPs of whatever hue sell their votes to determine policies in England that have been devolved?

    It is a Constitutional outrage and you have just made it very clear that your "Unionism" is not about "We're all in this together" but rather about "What can we get out of the English".

  2. If by not taking their seats, Sinn Fein MP's are being honourable are our other MP's being dishonourable?

    The issue of tuition fees is not just an English issue and it's naive to think otherwise. Does the executive follow the lead of Wales and subsidise our students going to English Universities?

    As for us 'not being all in this together' well no, we're not. I don't buy into such nonsense when it's clear that the government don't behave that way themselves.

  3. In addition, if you read my post, I actually state quit clearly that I respect Sinn Fein's position and it's their voters I hold to account.

  4. Are other (outside England) MPs being dishonourable in voting on English matters? YES. Especially when they sell their votes such as the DUP did when Gordon Brown needed their votes.

    As for you thinking the concept that we are "all in this together" is "nonsense" then all I can say is that you don't seem to follow a definition of Unionism that I as an Englishman can recognise.

    Because if that principle is "nonsense" then so is the idea of a Union of nations into one people.

  5. None of what you said had any relevance to my posts. This wasn't an entirely English matter. There will be a direct consequence for Northern Ireland. The DUP effectively selling there votes is, of course, not a practice that one can call honourable but that's not what had happened here.

    Whilst the Union does indeed imply a principle of togetherness there will also be times when regions and countries within the Union need to work to protect themselves from legislation which could have a disporortionate effect on them. It is also possible to be a Unionist whilst appreciating the separate identies of nations within that union.

  6. A "Unionist" who is now emphasising "separate identities".

    It seems to me that your form of Unionism is not a symbiotic relation but rather that of the Parasite on the Host.

  7. I think you have made your mind up about my Unionism so there is little point trying to convince you otherwise but I will say that if you can't recognise there are clear and defining separate identities within the Union then you are deluded. Particularly so because you described yourself as an Englishman. Is that not a separate identity from a Scotsman or a Welshman? Or would you prefer all in the Union to see themselves as English?