United Ireland Debate a huge success

May 20, 2013

The last time Crossmaglen Ranger’s Hall ran out of chairs there was a cup or trophy being brought to the famous club.  Last Tuesday night however, over 300 people congregated to attend a debate on a United Ireland and the holding of a Border Poll.

The debate, which was arranged by the United Ireland Crossmaglen / Creggan Upper group, was one of a number of events being held over a three week campaign which will culminate in a trial  referendum on Saturday 25th May asking people ‘Should Ireland be Reunited?’

Speaking after Tuesday’s debate Group Chairperson Emma McArdle said,

“I am overwhelmed by the attendance tonight – which demonstrates the fact that people here want to have this debate.

“Our panel was fantastic. Eamonn Mallie was a wonderful chair displaying wit and humour while also keeping panellists on their toes with his rapid fire questioning.”

The top table for the event consisted of Fine Gael Senator Jim D’Arcy from Dundalk, Newry Economist Dr Conor Patterson, Journalist and former member of the UUP and Orange Order Roy Garland and Sinn Féin TD Mary Lou McDonald.

The views of the panel were diverse with both Dr Patterson and Mary Lou McDonald arguing the economic and cultural merits of a United Ireland.  Senator D’Arcy, while agreeing with the sentiment, argued that the timing was not right.  Mr Garland also believed that the debate was premature and that the Unionist community would not engage in the discussion.

“The calibre of questions from the floor was very impressive,” Emma said, “People have really engaged with this campaign and every event builds on the one before it.  Momentum is definitely with us and I think this bodes really well for our vote on 25th May.”

For further information on any aspect of the campaign, contact Emma McArdle on 0860635854 or by email at  Alternatively, search for Border Poll on Facebook and @unitedireland on Twitter.