Johnson’s Brexit suffering is heightened by a vote in Northern Ireland

Thursday’s Northern Ireland elections could make a big difference in the region’s sensitive political balance, undermining Boris Johnson’s bid to redraw the conditions for Britain’s division from the European Union. There is sex.

According to polls, the Sinn Féin party has the ultimate goal of integrating the region with the Republic of Ireland and is aiming to become the largest political party. This is the first time for the Nationalist Party since the Northern Ireland Power Sharing Parliament was born from the Good Friday Agreement in 1998, which has largely ended decades of violence between union members and nationalists.

These results are of great significance to Northern Ireland, which has historically been dominated by a party loyal to Britain led by the Democratic Unionist Party. The Sinn Féin party is considered the IRA’s political sector during a violence known as trouble and wants to plan for United Ireland.

The immediate impact is likely to be felt in London, where Johnson’s pro-unionist conservative government is trying to rewrite part of the Brexit Agreement, which states that the EU is disrupting Northern Ireland’s trade.

For Unionists, the Northern Ireland Protocol, which maintained the region in the EU Customs Union to prevent the harsh borders of Ireland, represents an attack on the position of Northern Ireland in the United Kingdom. Power sharing government.

However, the debate over the Protocol fell into the hands of the Sinn Féin party, damaging DUP’s support. It also presents a headache for Johnson, who justified his tough stance with the EU, saying that the Protocol does not have the confidence of the local population.

At an event in London last week, former UK chief Brexit negotiator David Frost said the protocol needed to be replaced, in Brussels instead of London to avoid weakening Johnson’s hands. I urged the union members to turn their anger.

“More difficult”

The Democratic Unionist Party has focused much of its campaign on protocol issues, but the strong consequences of other parties that have accepted arrangements, such as the Sinn Féin Party, or the Union Party, are the Conservative Party and its members. It can spoil your view. It’s not working.

“It’s perfectly plausible that Northern Ireland’s political situation will be even more difficult than it was last month after the election,” Frost said.

In Lucid Talk’s final vote on Belfast Telegraph, the Sinn Féin party received 26% of DUP’s support against 20%. According to a University of Liverpool / Irish News survey, the gap was as large as over 8 percentage points, with the Democratic Unionist Party with the Alliance Party of Northern Ireland at 18.2%.

“When a large number of people in Northern Ireland are voting for the political parties that support it, saying that the protocol needs to be abolished makes a difference for the UK government in terms of message,” he said, focusing on British trade. Said David Henig, who is guessing. Think tank of the European International Political Economy Center.

The presence of the first Minister of the Sinn Féin party clearly shows that Northern Ireland does not follow London’s preferred direction of travel. Opinion polls suggest that increased support for the party does not necessarily mean increased enthusiasm for United Ireland, which will be an important boost for nationalists.

Historical moment

Katie Hayward, a professor of political sociology at Queen’s University Belfast, said: “Therefore, it is very important in itself that the Sinn Féin party has the situation 100 years after it is the largest political party in Northern Ireland.”

Of course, the opposite is true for unionists. As a result, Northern Ireland may face the potential for a long-term political stalemate.

At that time, when Democratic Unionist Prime Minister Paul Givan resigned in protest of the Protocol, Northern Ireland’s government was confused because Sinn Féin’s Deputy Prime Minister Michelle O’Neill had to resign as well.

In the region’s power-sharing system, the positions of the First Minister and the Deputy First Minister (in effect, one union member and one nationalist) are equal and one cannot be placed without the other.

The stalemate is imminent

The new law does not allow the main decision to be approved, but it does mean that Congress can continue to function for six months without executives.

“At the first hurdle to form a new executive, we really expected things to stop,” Hayward said.

The Johnson administration will submit a bill in parliament starting May 10 that will empower the minister to unilaterally invalidate some of the Brexit agreements. In addition to addressing the Protocol, this move may also encourage the DUP to take office in Northern Ireland.

However, such movements are likely to be met by strong EU opposition, which could result in legal action and the imposition of retaliatory tariffs.

Brexit fallout

It also frustrates Northern Ireland people who want the delegated government to focus on domestic issues such as housing, health care, and living expenses-of several party campaigns, including the Sinn Féin party. A topic that was an important pillar.

Certainly, it’s not natural for the Sinn Féin party to take the lead. Under Northern Ireland’s single transferable voting system, DUP has 9% support in LucidTalk / Belfast Telegraph votes and votes from supporters of the Traditional Unionist Voice Party, who are also strongly opposed to the Protocol. I was able to collect it.

On the other hand, if the alliance becomes the third largest party, it could be added to the request for constitutional amendment to a power-sharing system that prioritizes the party designated as a member or nationalist.

Whatever the outcome, the impact is significant. The first Minister of the Sinn Féin Party could strengthen nationalist views on both sides of the Irish border and increase Dublin’s and therefore EU resistance to changes to the Protocol. At the same time, there will be pressure to revoke the union members’ agreement on Johnson.

© 2022 Bloomberg LP Johnson’s Brexit suffering is heightened by a vote in Northern Ireland

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