Sorry, Willie. But it’s back to the policing and justice debate at the Assembly on Tuesday and back once more to that speech by Dr McCrea.
This time, step up namesake Basil McCrea…
Think of Bas as the beater to Dolores’s shooter. Just moments before Dolores would take Willie down with a pithy shot between the shoulder blades, Basil McCrea got up to spook to the old boy into the open.
Willie was in mid-flow and as effective as ever. Eg: on the First Minister’s efforts to secure a financial package…
Dr W McCrea: I appreciate the efforts that the First Minister has been making to try to get the Treasury and Mr Brown to come up with money.
However, what money can he come up with? Remember that words are cheap.
Willie is trying to be rude to Gordon Brown – though it disadvantages his position if the names Robinson and Brown could become interchangeable with no loss of meaning or impact. Whose words are cheapest – the First Minister’s or Prime Minister’s?
But soon, the grand old peacock of Parliament was joined in his expansive and wide-ranging speech by a cow and a nation of cuckoos. It’s a metaphorical jungle out there!
Dr W McCrea:… Mr Kennedy will say that his party has such influence with the Conservative Party. Although the Ulster Unionists may be only the tail of the cow, they will, nevertheless, be able to assure us that we will have all the money that we need.
That is living in cloud cuckoo land.
Erm… okay. But hang on, it’s like a bloody farmyard in here. A point of order surely!!
Mr B McCrea: On a point of order, Mr Deputy Speaker. I understand that, in Standing Orders, there is a rule that states that you are not allowed to compare people to animals. I distinctly heard the Member say that we were a cow. I think that Dr McCrea should withdraw those remarks.
Mr Deputy Speaker: I do not think that that is really a point of order. I will go back to the other Mr McCrea.
A moment of victory for Willie…!
Dr W McCrea: I feel sorry for Basil; he is so sensitive today. I never referred to any Member as an animal, I mentioned a party. With the greatest respect, Basil, I have been in politics for a long time, so do not try to lecture me about what we are allowed to do or say.
Which lasted about a second…!!
Mr B McCrea: On a point of order, Mr Deputy Speaker. I think that it is the protocol in this place not to refer to Members by their Christian names.
The Deputy Speaker: I ask the Member to remember that.
Whammy!! The luckless Willie McCrea clearly hasn’t been in politics long enough. He would go on to be completely blown away by Dolores Kelly just minutes later.
If you see Willie out and about round Antrim, give him a wee hug and tell him that he’s a really brave little soldier and that his heiny is prettier than more special anyone else’s. The poor lamb needs it. Bless.