One political correspondent suggests Peter Robinson’s comments on not trusting Muslims were an “error of judgement”. Only in the Liberal world 10% of us inhabit. Another suggests there was a “backlash” against him – but again, only from those Liberal ten-percenters. The Liberal media don’t get it, do they?
On Thursday, almost one in four of those entering the polling booth voted DUP first preference. Not a single one of those will now be regretting that decision. That is the real issue here – why can the media not understand that?
In the traditional conservative religion-centred world Peter Robinson inhabits, his comments were far from an “error of judgement”! Having seen 15% of the European Election vote disappear to his right (and similar at Council level where they stood), Peter Robinson the master tactician has instantly looked in that direction to shore up his vote.
After all, no one who voted for Anna Lo would ever contemplate voting DUP. But those (more) who voted for Jim Allister might. It’s that simple.
This has nothing to do with demands for resignation (which only make the DUP cult stronger) or the Ministerial Code (which they’ve already torn to shreds without penalty around the flag protests). It has to do with the fact that making comments like this make you more popular in Northern Ireland, not less so! (The Equality Commission has come out against you? Easy, point out no one elected them. Sinn Féin has come out against you? Easy, no terrorist apologist gets the high ground. And thus the votes return…)
Peter Robinson represents a much larger segment of the Northern Ireland population when he says these things than I do when I oppose them. That is the stark reality – and is the reason for my own appeal to Progressives to face that reality and unite to grow the rational centre ground.
It is astonishing that Liberal hacks in the press have so little understanding of the country they live in. That’s probably why no one buys their papers any more. The rest of us have to make sure that, in future, we offer stuff a significant chunk of our population (and electorate) are going to buy…