Monday, 29 October 2012

Why Has Gerry Adams called for a border poll?

Last week Gerry Adams called for a border poll and this morning (29 October) the Belfast Telegraph has recalled the results of an opinion poll, which was carried out earlier this year by polling partners LucidTalk.
The poll found that only 7% of Northern Ireland voters would vote to remove the border this year.
When asked if they would vote to remove it in 20 years time, the figure increased to 32%, with the proportion of the Roman Catholic population who favour unity now or in 20 years still a minority, standing at 48%.
Irish nationalists and republicans are losing the argument and this bullish call by Gerry Adams was probably motivated by two things:
1. a desire by Adams, who is a very marginal figure in the Republic, to appear relevant.
2. a desire that his party appear confident about the future direction of travel.
Support for Northern Ireland leaving the United Kingdom and joining the Irish Republic is at an all-time low.  That may be an unpalatable fact for Sinn Fein but it is a fact and Gerry Adams' call is simply an attempt to pretend otherwise and to reassure republicans.
He knows there won't be a border poll and he would be horrified if one was called, because it would expose how little support there is for taking Northern Ireland out of the United Kingdom.

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