It is now nearly 5 months since I launched the Northern Ireland Centre Right Campaign. In that time, I have written 60 posts. By now, practically all of the arguments that I am ever likely to make in support of the campaign have been written down somewhere on this blog.
One of the purposes of launching this blog was to not just to promote the campaign but to elicit the arguments both for and against it. I have received valuable contributions in the form of verbal discussion, emails and comments on this blog. I would like to express my sincere gratitude to everybody who has made a contribution.
I have decided that now is the right time to begin the next phase of the campaign. A blog has its limitations. Only a small number of people read blogs. During the next few weeks, I will be preparing a lengthy discussion document for distribution to members of the Conservative Party by print and email. It is very important that as many in the Conservative Party as possible have the opportunity to read the arguments. It is my intention that all Northern Ireland members are in receipt of a copy of the printed material and that every Conservative constituency association in England, Scotland and Wales receives an electronic copy of it.
On its own, the discussion document is likely to perplex many Conservatives who do not live in Northern Ireland. That is why I have decided to write a supplement about the background to Northern Ireland politics. Much of that document will contain a substantial amount of British and Irish history. Both of these documents are expected to be available for publication and distribution in January 2011.
The work involved in producing these documents will take up a considerable amount of my time. Accordingly, there will be a moratorium on regular blogging for the next few months. That does not mean to say that I will not write the odd post. At least one of them will be about the Sccottish Conservative Party.
I have been observing, for some time, debates by other Conservative bloggers and Newspapers about whether the Scottish Conservative Party should become independent. The momentum for that to happen is growing.
The Scottish Party needs the Conservative leadership to make a decision very soon. In my view, the appropriate time to make that decision is immediately after the Assembly Elections in the May 2011. In my opinion, that is also the appropriate time for a decision to be made about the future of the Northern Ireland Party.
Meanwhile, the invitation to comment remains. Right up until the time that I publish the discussion document, any comment or communication to me is capable of influencing what goes into it. So please keep them coming.