Friday, January 08, 2010

Robinson Reaction

The BBC Spotlight programme looking into the dealings of Iris Robinson and her teenage lover has led to all sorts of reaction.

First up as the BBC Report Ulster Unionist leader (and the Minister of my old department under devolution) Sir Reg Empey says Iris's position as MP, MLA and councillor are all untenable.

The Independent look at the sex, money and bigotry that surround the Robinson's as the revelations have come out. Looking at how the revelations we have only just heard about affected his ability to perform as first minister they say:

"For many months, Peter has been curiously inactive as First Minister, holding back on moves to devolve policing powers to Northern Ireland in a way which has puzzled most at Stormont. The most frequently advanced explanation for this was that he was, as Sinn Fein claimed, "spooked" by the fear of losing seats to hardline opponents in the Westminster election.

"But now, an alternative explanation is emerging: he has been grappling not just with political complications but with personal ones – struggling to deal with the behaviour of his colourful wife."

The Belfast Telegraph both use the image of Ann Bancroft seducing young Dustin Hoffman, as I did last night, how Iris is now paying for her lust and greed. But also look at the wider implications for the Democratic Unionist Party. Saying:

"Revelations about sexual indiscretions and questions over financial dealings can be damaging for any politician and any political party.

"But the DUP is not just any party. Its roots lie deep in fundamentalist conservative Protestantism and a brand of religion personified by Ian Paisley, who founded it and towered over it as leader until 2008.

"The key question now is: will the crisis facing the Robinsons impact on an already tarnished brand? The party has already had some tough times. Part of its traditional base was left in disarray by the 2007 decision to form a coalition with Sinn Fein."

The Irish Times point out that questions are being raised about Peter's dealings in this. Pointing out that on Wednesday in his interview whilst providing no further detail about his wife encouraging friends to support her lover Kirk McCambley he had said:

"In all of my public life I have acted in the most professional and ethical way. There is nothing that anybody will produce."

An interesting turn of phrase 'there is nothing that anybody will produce' why not the word 'can' or 'could' instead of 'will'. Also why use 'produce' why not just "There is nothing that anybody has to prove otherwise"?

Their print edition had also running with the story of how yesterday the fundamentalist Christians in Northern Ireland, not normally backward in defending 'morality', had held fire over Iris Robinson's fall from grace.

"It's easier to understand the warmth of feeling towards the wronged husband, rendered suddenly gaunt, fragile and uncharacteristically emotional. But there has been little hellfire and brimstone rhetoric towards Iris from the fundamentalist Protestant community that is the natural constituency of her party, the Democratic Unionist Party founded by Ian Paisley.

"You might think that this would be the perfect opportunity for a spot of thundering about the sins of scarlet women. Instead, the response from that sector has largely been quiet, muted and empathetic."

So that is just a taste of the spectrum of opinion among the broadsheets to last nights revelations the red tops of course took great delight in the age difference, with only passing reference to the financial or political implications.

1 comment:

Jess The Dog said...

Let's see how this is covered in the News Letter.

Can't see anything today!

However....the gossiping classes in the 'Ballymena Bible Belt' enjoy a bit of scandal every bit as much as going to church!


Related Posts with Thumbnails