Saturday, 17 November, 2018

DUP agrees principles to back UK Conservatives

President Donald Trump listens during his meeting with U.S. Mayors and Governors for a Infrastructure Summit in the State Dinning Room of the White House in Washington Thursday The polls failed to predict Donald Trump’s surprise election as United States President
Ellis Copeland | 12 June, 2017, 15:00

Thursday's General Election saw the Conservatives win only 318 seats, eight shy of winning an overall majority.

Instead of a projected landslide in her favour, May ended up throwing away the small majority that the former David Cameron-led party had won in the 2015 general election.

Timothy, one of two chiefs of staff on whom May relies heavily, said he took responsibility for his role in the Tory manifesto, criticised by many MPs, BBC reported.

Numerous party members are also uncomfortable with the kind of deal that will have to be struck with the DUP, a socially conservative party that takes an opposing stance on issues such as abortion and same sex marriages.

He said his party would seek to vote down May's Queen's Speech, or program for government, when she presented it to parliament.

"I can still be prime minister".

But a dismal campaign has left the Prime Minister fending off a mutiny in her own party.

May also reappointed an old adversary - Michael Gove, a former rival for the Conservative leadership whom May fired from the Cabinet when she took office past year.

May called the election called in a bid to strengthen her mandate ahead of European Union exit talks. She named her Cabinet Sunday, keeping most of the ministers in their posts and even appointing an old adversary, Michael Gove, to the post of environment secretary.

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When the two parties were running neck and neck, the twin terrorist attacks in a matter of two weeks became the last straw. There was no need for her to put her position on the line, and she had said earlier that an election was not needed.


The DUP was founded in the 1970s by the late firebrand preacher Ian Paisley, and in the 1980s was a key player in the "Save Ulster from Sodomy" campaign, which unsuccessfully fought against the legalization of gay sex.

Mrs May needs to shore up her position because the speech setting out the British government's programme is due on June 19, with a highly significant vote on its content expected after a few days' debate.

Survation, the opinion polling firm that came closest to predicting correctly the election's outcome, said a new poll it conducted for the Mail on Sunday newspaper showed support for Labour now 6 percentage points ahead of the Conservatives.

In a phone call, Irish premier Enda Kenny told Mrs May that forming a minority government reliant on the support of the hardline Protestant Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) could pose a "challenge" to the 1998 Good Friday peace accords.

"And I'm sorry for all those candidates and hard-working party workers who weren't successful, but also for those colleagues who were MPs and ministers and contributed so much to our country and who lost their seats and who didn't deserve to lose their seats", she said. "I'm afraid she didn't have those qualities herself, but she hired people that didn't have them either". German Chancellor Angela Merkel said she saw no reason to grant the United Kingdom a grace period.

"I don't think Theresa May and this government have any credibility". But Britain's Saturday newspapers agreed she is just clinging on.

Ms. May's weakness are in full display after her gamble on the Snap Election backfired spectacularly.

Still, the deal with the DUP risks upsetting the political balance in Northern Ireland. Whether that reality is a prolonged period of troubled and unstable minority government, with hints of a "coalition of chaos" in a deal with the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP), remains to be seen. "May stares into the abyss", wrote The Times, while the Conservative-supporting Sun tabloid said succinctly: "She's had her chips". Where I frame it is, we want a tariff-free access to the European market, we also want to maintain a very important university and research collaboration in Europe, and there's a whole host of European agencies - Euratom, security, environment - in which we wish to be part of.

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