Thursday, 22 April 2010

Hung Parliament? Be Careful What You Wish For Mr. Robinson

Relishing a hung parliament, as appears to be the case with the DUP's Peter Robinson and Alex Salmond, leader of the Scottish Nationalist Party, is a dangerous position to take. Just imagine for one moment how that political horse trading would look on May 7th, with Salmond, no lover of the UK and the DUP, who we are told are Unionists, working together in some sort of grand coalition? It could not work.
Nobody in their right mind would actively welcome a hung Parliament, the last time the UK electorate returned that sort of result marked a descent into paralysis and indecision economically and politically.

Northern Ireland and the UK as a whole need a clear outcome from this election if we are to see real action on the many issues that need to be addressed. We need a government with a clear mandate to tackle the big questions surrounding the economy, public services and defence. The “those are my principles and if you don't like them I have others” approach to politics, as followed by the DUP and the UK's nationalist parties, does not bring about a strong government with a clear vision for the United Kingdom.

The political uncertainty from hung a Parliament might give Peter Robinson's ego a short lived boost due to the extra influence he thinks it gives him but be under no illusion we would all suffer in the longer term. Be careful what you wish for Peter as it may just come true. Returning a strong national government of Conservatives and Unionists is the only way to ensure we in Northern Ireland have real influence in the next Parliament and help cement our place at the heart of the UK.

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