Conservatives and Unionists candidate for Upper Bann
The DUP Manifesto attempts to portray the possibility of a hung parliament as 'a once in a lifetime opportunity' for Northern Ireland. This is almost precisely the same language used by the anti-unionist Scottish and Welsh nationalists. In a joint statement last month, the SNP and Plaid described a hung parliament as 'a once in a generation opportunity' to advance their agenda.
The DUP are prepared to dangerously gamble with the Union by aiming for a hung parliament. The very fact that Scottish and Welsh nationalists are also working for this should alert unionists to the real dangers in this strategy. A hung parliament would result in a weak government and a weak Union. It would increase the power of the separatists, seeking to use their influence in Parliament to tear the Union apart.
While the DUP share a platform with the SNP and Plaid, the Conservatives and Unionists are determined to see Northern Ireland at the heart of the Union - not allied to those who want to end it. Being on the window ledge of the Union, giving influence to Scottish and Welsh nationalists, is not a unionist vision. Nor is hoping for a weak government that can be held to ransom by the SNP and Plaid. On 6th May the people of Northern Ireland can vote for a strong, pro-Union government at Westminster by voting Conservatives and Unionists.