Friday, 23 April 2010

No terrorists in government

The TUV manifesto is out. No surprise is that a central theme is 'No terrorists in government' essentially code for Sinn Fein. However, how do they intend to fulfil this promise? They offer three ideas but none of them keep their pledge.

Their key proposal is a law barring anyone with terrorist convictions:

"...we propose that it should be provided in primary legislation that no one with a terrorist conviction can ever hold ministerial office."

There is one fundamental and obvious flaw with this - not all terrorists were convicted. So a more honest slogan would be "No convicted terrorists in government". Neither Martin McGuinness nor Gerry Adams has a terrorist conviction in a British court. McGuinness could be excluded if the TUV legislation recognised his conviction in the Republic of Ireland but Gerry Adams has none in any country. So if enacted the TUV law would potentially result in Adams taking over from McGuinness as Deputy First Minister which I doubt is what those with moral objections would like to see.

The second idea that will allegedly achieve this is voluntary coalition. However, this cannot guarantee no terrorists aka Sinn Fein either. Jim Allister has already publicly admitted that Sinn Fein can still remain in government under voluntary coalition:

"If Sinn Fein can persuade others to join them in government then, distasteful as it would be to me, I'd have to accept them getting there."

The third idea is "enhanced local government". However, this doesn't remove Shinners from government either it just changes the form of government they are in.

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