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The SDLP And Colum Eastwood: Make Me Green, But Not Just Yet

So is it Colum Eastwood, the SDLP leader, or the members of the press who are sending mixed messages on the regional party’s attitude to the post-Brexit calls for a reunification referendum? From a short piece by the Irish Examiner:

“Colum Eastwood has said that the reunification of Ireland is “the biggest and best idea around” adding that it would be a “natural” way forward in the context of Britain leaving the EU.

His comments come after Enda Kenny this week opened up the possibility of a border poll in the context of Brexit negotiations.

Mr Eastwood, who was speaking in Glenties this morning said: “Much of the headline talk at MacGill this week has focused on the prospect of a further constitutional change through the calling of a border poll.

This is a natural and welcome development.”

He told those attending the summer school that the events of the past few months have proven that “political life can no longer afford to presume the permanence of anything”.

“The SDLP, as a party, continues to believe that the reunification of Ireland is the biggest and the best idea around.

He added: “Scottish independence campaigners produced a 670-page document outlining the path to independent nationhood and how it would operate.

“It was credible and detailed. Irish nationalism now needs to start on its page one.”

Meanwhile the Irish Times reports that:

“SDLP leader Calum Eastwood has said talk of a “Border poll” is “silly right now” and that the political situation in the North needed to be carefully managed to avoid “rocking the stability that is hard won”.

“We can talk about a Border poll down the line, but we want a Border poll we can actually win” said the MLA for Foyle on The Irish Times Inside Politics podcast, recorded at the MacGill Summer School in Glenties, Co Donegal.

Brexit has “rocked nationalism to its core” in Northern Ireland, according to Mr Eastwood, who used his address at MacGill to argue against Northern Ireland “being dragged out of the EU against its will”.

“No matter how often Theresa May repeats that Brexit means Brexit, we must strongly reply that consent means consent,” he said.”

As with many in Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil, some in the SDLP tend to forget that being a half-a-nationalist is as credible as being a half-a-virgin.


7 comments on “The SDLP And Colum Eastwood: Make Me Green, But Not Just Yet

  1. press bias anyone? maybe it’s time to record what politicians and other notables actually say ( verbalise in newspeak parlance) and compare and contrast with press reports from various sources.


  2. Kevin Breslin

    Liberal European unionism hold sway in this Remain vote, and may have second thoughts over the union as it is. Certainly it is foolish for some republicans to criticise different shades of nationalism rather than evangelise to newer pastures.


  3. In one respect it´s good that Brexit has moved things on, but several cans of worms will need to be opened so reasonable caution is only natural. I foresee a lot of clever footwork over the coming months in Europe, London, Edinburgh, Belfast and Dublin. The question really is who is going to get tripped up, but with a bit of luck when the ball is over we might end up with a united Ireland, an indy Scotland and London finally put in its place. The trick will be to work out and co-ordinate the correct sequence of moves. This is certainly going to test the abilities of our politicians … game on?


  4. john cronin

    Eastwood’s attitudes are probably the majority attitude in the Cath mid class. There is no great enthusiasm for a united Ireland among SDLP voters.


    • Perhaps because of poor leaders like Eastwood, and those who came before him? The last decent SDLP head was John Hume. The rest have been increasing models of mediocrity.


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