As reported in the Guardian, this week finally saw a coalition deal drawn between the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP), and The Conservative Party. Unfortunately this deal came at a cost.
The DUP, well known for their controversial views surrounding abortion, have secured £1 billion for Northern Ireland’s economy in return for their support on the Conservative’s Queen’s Speech.
This allocation of funds begs the question why we are selling off and privatising huge NHS organisations, when we clearly have the money available to help fix some of the problem.
Theresa May’s strong and stable leadership is now a thing of the past as she removes much needed funds from our budget, and trades them for a majority vote.
Understandably, this has caused uproar with not only England itself, but Scotland and Wales too.
The deal, just three pages long, confirms the Conservative agreement to meet NATO and spend 2% of GDP on the armed forces, and both parties must adhere to the Armed Forces Covenant. This promises priority care for children of current and ex members of the Armed Forces.
According to the Guardian, Carwyn Jones, First Minister of Wales, named the agreement outrageous, stating it was “a straight bung to keep a weak Prime Minister and faltering government in office”.
Similarly, Nicola Sturgeon professed:
“In concluding this grubby, shameless deal, The Tories have shown that they will stop at nothing to hold on to power – even sacrificing the very basic principles of devolution”.
Earlier last week, Jeremy Hunt proclaimed he would consider reviewing the pay cap for healthcare staff, only for it to be forgotten in the Queen’s Speech.
Today, Tuesday 27th June, this was met with the start of the Nurse’s “Summer of Protest” that the Royal College of Nursing declared just last month.
On Thursday, Theresa May will be presenting her Queen’s Speech for vote in Parliament. She will require the alliance of all ten DUP MPs to even stand a chance of having it passed, and enabling her party to govern without majority.
Ironically, although ideal for the Conservatives short term, long term the deal may not be sufficient. It has been suggested that in just two years, the DUP will ask for further concessions from the Tories.
Instead of rejoicing for a secured government, many of us are mourning the loss of a nation that once was.