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Since the countdown to the Scottish referendum began, a substantial corps of writing has been produced on the referendum and its impact. As far as the British Labour Party is concerned, it risks losing some forty Westminster seats in the case of a ‘yes’ vote, which explains Labour’s strong activism on the ‘no’ side. In encouraging Scots to vote ‘no’ for autonomy and sovereignty over their affairs, Labour has come up with a range of intriguing arguments. The promise of increased devolution in the case of a Labour victory at the 2015 UK general election is one. In addition, Labour’s legislators and MP-aspirants from ethnic minority communities have launched a staunch campaign, with Sadiq Khan MP remindingus that the first ever British Muslim MP was elected from a Scottish constituency. Read more here.
[Press] Column: Will our new cordial partnership with Britain trickle down to NI’s day-to-day politics?
THE DECADE OF COMMEMORATIONS is marked by an interest in grand gestures that strive to symbolise the long distance travelled in Anglo-Irish relations. The level of relations today between the British and Irish governments, Stormont and Dublin, as well as between Irish republicans and the British government are indeed unprecedented. The 2011 royal visit to Ireland, the 2012handshake between Queen Elizabeth and Martin McGuinness, as well as President Higgins’s 2014 state visit, are all cited as examples of an extremely cordial partnership.
Whether the impact of these interactions at the topmost levels of high politics trickles down to the thornier area of Northern Ireland’s day-to-day politics remains an open question.
Read more here. This article was originally published in The Journal, on April 18, 2014.