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An upset in Ulster

A surge in republican turnout causes an upset in Northern Ireland

After a foolish gibe about crocodiles, the first minister gets bitten

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When Ireland was partitioned in 1926 the north was 67% Protestant and 33%, the Protestants had control of the gov't, the land, the jobs , the constabulary and, when needed like during the Troubles, the English military, basically consigning Catholics to second-class citizenship, the demographic is 41% Protestant to 40% Catholic...the political winds have shifted and it would seem that in the near future the Catholics will assume the political power that has long eluded them...then we'll see how the Protestants, and England, react to being the minority party and the subsequent loss of their many first-class privileges....and that's before the inevitable drive to be reunited with Ireland..that's when the s**t really hits the fan!

great uncle clive

Would it be correct to say ? This is the first time in 200 years that Ulster has lacked a unionist majority government
If as a result of Brexit , Ulster reunites with Ireland remaining in Europe , the whole Brexit foolishness will have been gloriously worthwhile


The DUP also has to consider that perhaps many unionists voted for the opposition as a way of registering their displeasure with (a) the DUP's support of Brexit and (b) the DUP's fraud, waste, and abuse of public funds in the cash-for-ash mess. It is not a simple matter of "more" Sinn Fein supporters turning out, but a serious backlash by Unionist voters too against their own politicians who do not deserve their support.


The Irish island should be one country.
Those worried to live there should be offered legal protection aiming at equal treatment like any other Irish citizen and the UK (rather England) should help them to resettle if they wish to do so.
Clean and modern solution; and case closed.


"Sinn Fein further accuses Mrs Foster of wasting hundreds of millions of pounds in her handling of a green-energy initiative, which has become known as the “cash for ash” affair."
That large sums of public money have been wasted on the scheme seems beyond doubt. That Ms Foster was the minister responsible when the scheme was set up is certain.
Sinn Fein have been careful not to accuse Ms Foster of anything. They have merely said that she should step aside while the matter is investigated.
It is surprising the Sinn Fein seem to be mare careful in their use of language than The Economist


It is morally repugnant for Ireland to be divided by an artificial border based on religious values and the only satisfactory manoeuvre, is for the two Irelands to reunite. Once again British idiocy continues to haunt all of us. It has only been with the theft of other countries resources that they have actually managed to acquire a semblance of wealth. Without it, they would probably be lumped together with other third world states. The country has been so poorly governed for centuries, resulting in a citizenry, mostly unfit to complete the tasks required of a civilised nation.

lvnv99 in reply to derek5

The solution is to respect democracy and the will of the majority and the majority do not wish to be united with the Republic of Ireland. Irish-Americans who hypocritically complain about land "stolen" from the Irish while simultaneously living on land stolen from Native Americans should butt out. Clean and simple solution; case closed.

bennfuji in reply to tjfob

Is it actually true, I wonder, to assume that 'England' is opposed to Northern Ireland being 'reunited with Ireland'? Is there any polling evidence of relevant opinion in England or in England/Scotland/Wales?

I've no intention of voting for Sinn Fein in a million years but the arrogant betrayal of the GFA compromise by the English means that the current constitutional compromise is dead. I hope to see more policy papers from Irish think tanks and parties on how we integrate the NHS to customs to schools.

We have to reasonable and immediately start planning on how we integrate NI.


A dilemma for England. Ulster may finally break with England and refuse to join Brexit. Scotland will do the same.
Who knows even Wales may be tempted as well.
Can little old England go it alone?!
There may be more crocodiles in the British swamp than the English have bargained for!

Aidan 1974

I'm not sure where all the United Ireland comments are coming from below. There is no serious discussion about it in the Republic and Sinn Fein are nearly as toxic in the south as Gert Wilders is in The Netherlands. For a united Ireland the Republic would have to vote 'For' which unless you held it after everyone's had a few pints on 17th March would be unlikely to pass in the foreseeable future.

Spectacularj1 in reply to tjfob

I don't think anyone in Westminster would ever admit it, but I think the British government concluded long ago that Northern Ireland is far more trouble than it is worth. At this point I seriously doubt they would adamantly oppose reunification.

guest-nonoson in reply to guest-ajoiwnin

thats genius: pick some fuckwit's sopeech in 1943 and on the basis of that condemn a whole country 80 years later. Condemn his son too, because obviously its not racist to say that anti-semitism is hereditary.
Russell is reviled in the republic, rightly so.
Can we kind of not decide our future based on ancient anecdotes?

J Worthington

This whole protestant vs Catholic population figure is dubious. How many Protestants/Catholics actually regularly attend? Likely a small minority on both sides. The real winner of the 21st century was agnosticism.