One of the likelier scenarios on Friday is a Tory-DUP coalition, the DUP being the leading Unionist party in Northern Ireland. Not only could this mean unsightly blackmail - the DUP would demand an exemption from spending cuts in an already over-subsidized province - it could mean even more strain on the peace process. An Irish reader writes:

The DUP, the party of Ian Paisley, would surely demand a raft of concessions favourable to its unionist constituency. With relations already tense between Unionists and Nationalists on the North's power-sharing executive, the perception of Downing Street being beholden to or "in the pocket" of one section of the community could bring old tensions to the surface. Hence many Irish nationalists over here hope that if Cameron wins tomorrow, he wins big.

A strong Tory government is rarely pined for in Ireland, but if it prevents further friction in Ulster, then many of us will readily accept it.

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