Its an ill wind that blows no good.
In 2010, Naomi Long was the beneficiary of a scandal within the DUP.
The goings on …both personal and professional…led the good folks in the Belmont Bowling Club to vote for Naomi Long in the 2010 Westminster Election.
And a year later, it helped Chris Lyttle and Judith Cochrane into the Assemblŷ.
Even within the Alliance Party there appears a deep disappointment at the performance of their two most youthful MLAs.
And of course the Flegs Dispute has at least an aspect of DUP revenge at Naomi winning the seat in 2010. And the DUP wants that seat back. Obviously I wish them well.
If Naomi saw the writing on the wall….literally …in December 2012, she will be heartened that the new scandal within DUP is centred on East Belfast.
There is…we are told…no smoking gun.
Alas, the Petition of Concern which the DUP used yesterday ensures that we wont have access to the library to check for the smoking gun. And with the passage of time, the gun could disappear anyway…along with a lot of forensics and people might have time to co-ordinate their recollections.
So Naomi and indeed every non-DUP person is inclined to stand at the door of the locked library and say that they smell sulphur.
It does not actually matter whether they can smell anything at all.
The really important thing is that non-DUP people SAY that they smell something.
In the absence of evidence, it is enough to create an impression.
Thus Saint Naomi the Good suggests that the real answer lies in the transparency of political donations. And points out…by the by…that the Alliance Party is the only local Party which publishes a list of donations.
Well…that SOUNDS good.
But if you visit the Alliance Party website (I DID and I feel unclean) the declarations are as dull as the Alliance Party itself.
Its basically a non declaration.
Alliance gets funding from (yawn) the Norn Iron Assembly.
And has some rent free accomodation. but dont get excited cos thats basically an Aliance company…directors include David Ford.
So no big deal.
Nothing to declare.
Well…this Alliance transparency begins in 2011.
which funnily enough is the year of the last Assembly Election.
Which funnily enough means that the £98,000 received from the Rowntree Reform Trust is not in the declaration.