When the DUP reached a confidence and supply agreement with Theresa May in 2017 – and managed to extract a £1b bung from the government – commentators noted that after years fighting their corner during the Troubles, the party had a formidable amount of experience when it came to negotiation.
Now, as Arlene Foster goes to Brussels for three intense meetings with Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier, could their strategies be coming into play?
Mr S notes that in a press release last night which announced the visit, the DUP mis-spelt the EU Chief Negotiator’s name, billing him as the rather more feminine ‘Michelle Barnier’.
The DUP mispells EU Brexit negotiator's name in press release announcing Arlene Foster's plan to meet Michel Barnier, not Michelle Barnier pic.twitter.com/rmH50vu9pt
— Hugh O'Connell (@oconnellhugh) October 8, 2018
Could the DUP be winding up the man in charge of Britain and the EU’s fate to get under his skin, and get concessions when it comes to the Brexit deal? Or, does their press office simply need to invest in a proof-reader? Mr S isn’t sure, but he is certain about one thing: Madame Barnier better not underestimate the First Minister of Northern Ireland.