Friday, 14 May 2010

What exactly is a party source

THE SDLP leadership of Margaret Ritchie is barely underway and there are rumblings of discontent over various appointments she is making, such as Alex Attwood who replaces her at the Social Development Ministry.

The BBC reported nagging complaints from party sources about the Ritchie leadership.

One can spend a lot of time analysing these ‘rumblings’. However, perhaps it is more productive to define what exactly a ‘party source’ is. We have a sneaking suspicion that the party sources the BBC and others are referring to are those that didn’t get jobs or didn’t vote for Ms Ritchie in the first place.

Which, of course is understandable on a human level, but may be a wee bit short-sighted in terms of politics. We are less than a year away from Assembly and local council elections. Will the electorate’s memories be of a party that retained three Westminster seats, or will they be of a party where there is back-biting and animosity?

It would seem like a good time for party grandees to sit down the troops and explain a few home truths about elections. Should that fail then it will be time to get the kiddies together in a wee circle and explain that you can’t always get what you want.

Should that fail errant members can always look to the UUP as a model for future electoral success...

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