Friday 23 June 2017

Wrong politician has quit - but the day of reckoning for Arlene Foster is now closer

‘Belligerent even now, Mrs Foster is claiming Mr McGuinness’s position is political rather than principled, although the cash-for ash story is the biggest public finance scandal in Stormont’s history Picture: PA
‘Belligerent even now, Mrs Foster is claiming Mr McGuinness’s position is political rather than principled, although the cash-for ash story is the biggest public finance scandal in Stormont’s history Picture: PA
Martina Devlin

Martina Devlin

The wrong politician resigned yesterday: Arlene Foster should have stepped down rather than Martin McGuinness. But the day of reckoning for Stormont's obstinate First Minister has just edged considerably closer.

I wonder if Arlene Foster is feeling lucky? Her fortunes look set to be tested at the ballot box shortly - Mr McGuinness's departure makes her position untenable as First Minister. She has little choice but to return to the electorate on a 'back me or sack me' platform.

The First Minister is facing now into a general election sooner rather than later, and the only guarantee is that it will be a bitter battle. With her at the head, the DUP is hobbled and in a weakened position. What an inept leader, what a blinkered party - compromise would have avoided this situation but conciliation is not in Mrs Foster's nature. Which is something of a disadvantage in coalition government.

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