Sci-tech

May's election gamble backfires as voters throw a surprise

May's election gamble backfires as voters throw a surprise

The border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland is sure to be a hot topic. As the party of government, the Conservative Secretary of State for Northern Ireland would be the neutral facilitator of talks to get devolution back up and running.

Davidson's Scottish Conservatives went from one seat to 13 in the election, giving the national party one of its few success stories on the night.

DUP Deputy Leader Nigel Dodds, who leads the party's Westminster team, referred to those past arrangements in an interview with RTÉ News today.

This comes following reports earlier today that May had "no intention of resigning", despite the United Kingdom general election ending in a hung parliament.

Mrs May's decision to seek a deal with the DUP has prompted concerns from some Tories.

Why was a deal so easy?

A relative unknown in global political terms, the DUP now holds a crucial role in facilitating the establishment of a government ahead of crucial Brexit negotiations in 10 days time.

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"I told her that there were a number of things that count to me more than the party", she told the BBC. This pact builds on that cooperation.

Both of the two main parties increased their percentage of the vote as support for third parties fell away.

The DUP now finds itself centre stage - a long way from its foundation in 1971 by firebrand Protestant evangelical preacher Ian Paisley to defend Northern Ireland's union with Britain against demands for a united Ireland. For unionists the link with Britain is key.

Ms McGowan said Northern Ireland's special circumstances must be at the forefront of any Brexit discussions if the region is to succeed, and insisted: "A hard-Brexit would not work for our business and agricultural community, and we may now have a one-off opportunity to ensure that it does not happen in an economically destructive way".

The move was denounced by Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, who called on her to stand aside and allow him to form an administration, declaring: "We are ready to serve". Blocking Mr Corbyn from becoming UK Prime Minister is a DUP priority. But who are they and what do they stand for?

Their differences highlight Northern Ireland's often stark dichotomy between religious-based social conservatism and secular progressive liberalism.

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The party is not pro-choice.

It opposes same-sex marriage and is anti-abortion - with abortion remaining illegal in Northern Ireland, except in specific medical cases.

What does this mean for Northern Ireland?

The DUP is against abortion, which is illegal in Northern Ireland in nearly all circumstances. That Executive collapsed in January 2017 and, following elections in March, no new Executive could be formed. This has left the DUP with a very strong hand in bartering a price for such support, whatever form this will take.

The fact that a prominent figure in the Conservative Party has already raised the matter publicly as a potential source of friction and embarrassment for the Tories within hours of the announcement of a Conservative-DUP deal to keep May in power indicates that this has the potential to be a thorny issue.

During the Northern Irish peace process, they stood their ground against British prime ministers, Irish taoisigh (prime ministers) and U.S. presidents. But Corbyn's old-school socialist platform and impassioned campaigning style won wider support than anyone had foreseen. Membership of the European Union also brought financial benefits to Northern Ireland in order to support projects and infrastructure associated with the peace process.

What the UK election earthquake means for the world
May and her advisors have spent the morning talking with leaders of the Democratic Unionist Party ( DUP ) in Northern Ireland . The British general election has produced a hung parliament , with no single party winning an overall majority .


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