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Other Discussion Boards => Philosophy, Religion & Society => Topic started by: xasop on May 04, 2022, 03:32:52 PM

Title: 2022 Northern Ireland election
Post by: xasop on May 04, 2022, 03:32:52 PM
There is an election for the Northern Ireland Assembly tomorrow, and it is set to be a historic one. In the wake of Brexit, the DUP has imploded, paving the way for Sinn Féin to overtake them — the first time a nationalist party will be the largest in more than a century of Northern Irish history. However, their usual rhetoric of campaigning for a border poll on Irish reunification has taken a back seat to dealing with the wake of Brexit and the cost of living crisis this time around.

Brexit, now firmly history in the rest of the UK, has been central to this election debate, with the Northern Ireland Protocol continuing to be as contentious as everyone warned it would be before Brexit was signed off on. The Protocol keeps Northern Ireland within the EU's single market, creating a customs border in the Irish Sea and obligating the UK government to perform checks on goods imported into Northern Ireland from Great Britain — an obligation they are currently failing to meet. This is necessary to avoid a hard border within the island of Ireland, an outcome considered undesirable by all involved.

Meanwhile, the DUP is insisting they will not participate in government until the Protocol is reworked, while still providing no practical alternative suggestions. Since this is very unlikely to happen and the Good Friday Agreement mandates that the Northern Irish government must share power between nationalists and unionists, the likely outcome is that forming government will be difficult, even with Sinn Féin in the dominant position.

The other winner in this election is likely to be Alliance, a centrist party that identifies as neither nationalist nor unionist, but sets itself apart from sectarian politics. They are predicted to gain several seats, and they tend to be a stabilising force in Northern Irish politics, so this is the best news of all for me.

Further reading: NI Assembly election: Everything you need to know — The Irish Times (

Whatever the outcome, Brexit is certain to dominate political discourse in Northern Ireland for months to come. Predictably, the rest of the UK continues to not care or even understand ( that this issue exists, furthering the disconnect between the British in Northern Ireland and their countrymen on the other side of the Irish Sea who consider them little more than a nuisance. I wish I could say a solution was on the horizon, but Westminster has repeatedly rejected every possible solution, leaving Stormont with little recourse of its own.
Title: Re: 2022 Northern Ireland election
Post by: xasop on May 05, 2022, 12:55:06 PM
Not content to have created this situation, Westminster has decided to stoke it some more.

Quote from:
Brandon Lewis indicated on ITV’s Peston programme on Wednesday night that the government had pulled back from including plans in the Queen’s speech next week allowing it to suspend part of the protocol.

Coming just hours before polling stations opened for today’s Assembly election, his comments could spell serious trouble for DUP leader Sir Jeffrey Donaldson.

There is no possible reason for them to make this announcement at this particular time, other than in the hope of rousing up anger on election day in Northern Ireland. This isn't about the Protocol, it's about propping up Boris's regime by creating problems that it can then purport to solve.

Boris needs to be ousted, and he needs to be ousted now.
Title: Re: 2022 Northern Ireland election
Post by: xasop on May 06, 2022, 04:00:05 PM
The election count is well underway.

As predicted, Sinn Féin topped the first preferences and is (so far) topping the number of seats, although only 15 of 90 seats have been declared as yet.
Title: Re: 2022 Northern Ireland election
Post by: xasop on May 07, 2022, 06:51:59 PM
Sinn Féin now definitively has the most seats, for the first time in 101 years. There are still 2 seats left to declare, but Sinn Féin has 27 and DUP has 24, so there is no way for them to catch up.

Unfortunately, they are still harping on about a border poll instead of dealing with the real issues people care about.

Quote from:
While unionists at some count centres were left visibly stunned by the scale of their defeat, there was jubilation among supporters of Sinn Féin, whose leader, Mary Lou McDonald, told TalkTV she believed a border poll on a united Ireland would be possible “within a five-year timeframe”.

Still a step up from the DUP, though.