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Mary C. Murphy, University College Cork, urges caution in linking Northern Ireland support for remaining in the EU with growing support for a united Ireland.

In 1998, the Northern Ireland electorate voted in a historic referendum to support the Good Friday/Belfast Agreement. The Agreement was reached following multi-party talks and was an integral part of the Northern Ireland peace process. Turnout for the referendum was 81%. Of those who voted, 71% voted in support of the Agreement.

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Judging by the referendum result, it may seem obvious that Scots are more European than their neighbours to the south but, says David McCrone, the binary choice in a referendum masks a more complex picture. 
 
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A pattern is emerging post-Brexit: it’s the women who are stepping forward, as male political leaders resign from the enormous task of taking Britain out of the EU. Prof Susan Murphy says that such a development should come as no surprise.
 
"Leadership required for G7 nation in crisis; will the women please step in?"
 
This is not an advert that you’re likely to see in the job pages of The Economist, but at the rate that unlikely scenarios are taking hold of real British politics, one is left to wonder. 
 
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  • 18th December 2018

    Aileen McHarg looks at last week’s decision by the Supreme Court in the UK Withdrawal from the European Union (Legal Continuity) (Scotland) Bill reference which demonstrates both the strength and the weakness of Holyrood as a legislature.

  • 17th December 2018

    The Supreme Court's ruling on the Scottish Continuity Bill gave both sides something but acknowledged that the vast bulk of the Bill was within Holyrood's competence at the time it was passed however, suggests Sionaidh Douglas-Scott, the strong feeling that devolved interests are not taken seriously highlights underlying fractures within the Union.

  • 14th December 2018

    Disagreements about the border between Northern Ireland and Ireland are about more than practical considerations of where customs checks should be performed, says Michael Keating.

  • 14th December 2018

    Derek MacKay’s third budget of this parliamentary session was doomed to be overshadowed by events at Westminster.

  • 12th December 2018

    Although the N-VA has insisted it left the Belgian government to pursue ’principled opposition’ those principle are, says Coree Brown Swan, at the very least informed by a strategy that allows it to maintain policy influence from outside government while countering the electoral threat posed by a resurgent Vlaams Belang.

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