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Andree Murphy

The empty chair at the debate on Irish unification

Andree Murphy


Discussions stepped up a gear this week, but unionists were hardly anywhere to be seen, says Andree Murphy

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Views: Mary Lou McDonald and Leo Varadkar taking part in the debate on RTE’s Claire Byrne Live earlier this week

Views: Mary Lou McDonald and Leo Varadkar taking part in the debate on RTE’s Claire Byrne Live earlier this week

Views: Mary Lou McDonald and Leo Varadkar taking part in the debate on RTE’s Claire Byrne Live earlier this week

There was a seismic change in the tone of the constitutional debate this week that, in years to come, may well be pointed to as the week Ireland got busy for change.

RTE, for the very first time, brought the largest parties in the south together to discuss - in words writ 10 feet tall - a united Ireland. And no one tore the head off each other.

Fianna Fail's other leader, Jim O'Callaghan, had people poring over his paper on a united Ireland as he delivered an online speech for Sussex University.


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