The Anglo-Irish agreement was negotiated in 1985 at meetings between Thatcher, Irish Taoiseach Garret FitzGerald and social democratic and labour party (SDLP) leader John Hume. Irish republicans have been able to reject the only constitutional progress (in the eyes of many nationalists and republicans) since the fall of Stormont a decade earlier. As such, the agreement reinforced the policy approach advocated by the SDLP and helped Republicans recognise the principle of consent as the basis for a fundamental change in Northern Ireland`s national status as the basis for a fundamental change in Northern Ireland`s national status. In ten years, however, PIRA announced a (first) ceasefire, and both governments negotiated with both sides in the Northern Ireland conflict that led to the Good Friday Agreement.  At his separate press conference, Premier FitzGerald maintained the unreasthistic language and tone of the communiqué. He described the discussions as „extensive and constructive.“ He refused to be drawn into a public disagreement with the British prime minister. But their remarks provoked a storm of criticism in Ireland. Hume, for example, called his language „deep and justified anger and insult.“ Back in Dublin, during a closed-door session of his party`s MPs, FitzGerald called his remarks „gratuitously insulting,“ a phrase that quickly found its way into the newspapers. For the British and Irish governments, who have looked at this vote with caution, there has been encouraging news. The two nationalist parties clashed only in the four districts where Catholics are in the majority. SDLP candidates campaigned for the deal and their combined votes increased by 19% compared to the level of the 1983 parliamentary elections. Support for Sinn Fein, which attacks the deal as a „sale“ to the British, has fallen by 25%.
Given that the political raison d`être of the agreement is to reduce the alienation of nationalists, the strong performance of the SDLP suggests that this justification is solid. The agreement was adopted by Dáil Éireann by 88 votes to 75 and by Seanad Éireann by 37 votes to 16.   The Irish nationalist political party Fianna Fáil, Ireland`s main opposition party, also rejected the deal. Fianna Fáil leader Charles Haughey claimed the deal was contrary to Articles 2 and 3 of the Irish Constitution because it formally recognised British jurisdiction in Northern Ireland. He was also fought by independent Republican TDs Neil Blaney and Tony Gregory, blaney calling the deal „fraudulent work.“ Despite this resistance, all the other main parties in the Republic supported the agreement, and it was ratified by the Oireachtas. To encourage the two hostile communities in the North to cooperate, the negotiators of the agreement decided to request the creation of an economic development fund that would be financed by special grants from Britain, the European Community, Canada, Australia and, they hope, the United States. Despite the limitations of the Gramm-Rudman-Hollings budget bill, President Reagan proposed and House Speaker O`Neill is actively supporting a one-time grant of $250 million, with actual funding spanning five years. .