dglobalnews.com Facing competing Brexit demands, PM May nears deal with Northern Irish 'kingmakers'
Published: Thu, June 29, 2017
Global Media | By Cecelia Webb

Facing competing Brexit demands, PM May nears deal with Northern Irish 'kingmakers'

Facing competing Brexit demands, PM May nears deal with Northern Irish 'kingmakers'

On Tuesday she held talks with Democratic Unionist Party leader Arlene Foster, whose anti-abortion, homophobic and eurosceptic Northern Irish party has 10 parliamentary seats and could shore up May's minority Conservative government.

In a meeting with the Northern Irish party's leader, Arlene Foster, May will thrash out the terms of a deal that will allow her to get legislation through Parliament.

Last evening, May faced the tough 1922 Committee of her party's backbench MPs amid a brewing rebellion within the ranks after her gamble to call a snap general election backfired, leaving the Tories eight seats short of a majority.

The British Prime Minister should consult with the opposition Labour Party and others on her Brexit strategy, David Cameron, May's predecessor, says, according to the Financial Times.

Her most senior minister Damian Green has confirmed the Queen's Speech setting out the Government's programme could be delayed if a deal is not reached in time for it to go ahead on Monday as planned.

The talks Tuesday with the Democratic Unionist Party follows her apology to Conservative rank-and-file lawmakers in a meeting which signaled she would be more open to consultation, particularly with business leaders demanding answers about the details on Britain's departure from the European Union.

She told a meeting of backbenchers that she had got the party into "this mess" by calling the snap election and now "I'll get us out of it".

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She added that "Brexit, counter-terrorism and doing what's right for Northern Ireland in respect of economic matters" were among the issues being discussed.

The DUP leader is nearly certain to ask for greater investment in Northern Ireland as the price of a deal.

May has said that the party, with its 10 crucial MPs to make up a majority in the House of Commons for the Conservatives, will have no veto on key policies. "Basically it will be Theresa May signing cheques for the foreseeable future or a monthly direct debit, as it were, into Northern Ireland's coffers".

"Going overseas and being seen to be the prime minister and talking to the president of France.is a classic move to shore up authority at home", said Colin Talbot, professor of government at the University of Manchester.

Mr Gove said there was a need to ensure public spending was sustainable but stressed that "we also need to take account of legitimate public concerns about ensuring that we properly fund public services in the future".

However, on top of being unpopular with large swathes of the United Kingdom electorate - with a petition against such a deal on change.org receiving over 700,000 signatures as of June 12 - the DUP's historically anti-gay, anti-Catholic and anti-abortion agenda has spooked even Conservative Members of Parliament.

He also told BBC radio that the government would "walk away" without a deal if the talks break down on ending Britain's four-decade membership of the European bloc.

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