+++80% of special Welsh conference members vote to back Kirsty Williams as Education Secretary in Welsh government

Many thanks to @liberalmorgan and @peterblackwales for keeping us updated on the special Welsh Liberal Democrat conference today.

They’ve just tweeted (see below) a few minutes ago to say that the conference has endorsed the motion:

That the Welsh Liberal Democrats endorse the Progressive Agreement announced on Thursday, 19 May 2016, by Welsh Labour and Kirsty Williams and the invitation made by the First Minister to Kirsty Williams AM to take up the position of Cabinet Secretary for Education within the Welsh Government.

This is quite an historic moment. Many congratulations to Kirsty on getting such fulsome backing and becoming Education Secretary for Wales!

The conference today was closed so tweeting was generalised, without a comprehensive identification of views to speakers. But the tweets did give a flavour that the subject was thoroughly debated over three hours.

Well done to Welsh Liberal Democrats on a momentous conference!

* Paul Walter is a Liberal Democrat activist. He is one of the Liberal Democrat Voice team. He blogs at Liberal Burblings.

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  • What were the actual voting figures and how many able to vote attended?

  • David Evans 21st May '16 - 5:08pm

    I do hope Kirsty makes a real effort to reach out to and listen to the 20%. They are the ones who (given the right chance) will watch her back.

  • Caron Lindsay Caron Lindsay 22nd May '16 - 9:57am

    What a curious comment, David Evans. It isn’t just those who didn’t feel able to back this deal that will have her back. Now the decision has been made, everyone, surely, will want Kirsty to be successful and implement those wide-ranging Lib Dem policies.

  • Richard Underhill 22nd May '16 - 10:42am

    “Labour’s main aims include a “relentless focus on securing a successful and sustainable future for our steel industry”, and Mr Jones pledged ministers would “campaign vociferously for a Remain vote” in June’s EU referendum. ” BBC
    OK, let’s see that.

  • Gwyn Williams 22nd May '16 - 2:27pm

    There are three strategic options for any Party in Wales. Abolish the Welsh Assembly, reform it or support the status quo. During the Assembly election campaign, we were calling for an alternative to 17 years of Welsh Labour Government. We were firmly in the Reform the Assembly camp.
    Labour has won 29 out of 60 seats with about a third of the vote.The one obvious way to reform the Assembly is the abolition of the 40 FPTP seats which Labour in Wales and the Tories in England oppose. The short term tactic to keep a visible presence in the Assembly requires us to support the status quo. This has overridden the necessary Liberal and Reformist strategy.

  • nvelope2003 22nd May '16 - 2:49pm

    The abolition of all or most of the FPTP seats in the Welsh assembly would have allowed the Liberal Democrats to have about 3 or 4 seats instead of 1 and reduced the number of Labour AMs to about 20 so ending one party rule sometimes.

  • David Evans 23rd May '16 - 4:10pm

    What a curious comment, Caron Lindsay. Indeed it isn’t certain that just those who didn’t feel able to back this deal that will have her back. However based on the disaster that was our last time in coalition, the problem was that our then leader didn’t want to listen to those who were more sceptical of the Conservative’s motives in coalition, and Labour are just as capable of being nasty to coalition partners. I am surprised you seem to have forgotten that so quickly.

    Indeed the decision has been made, and everyone in the party will want Kirsty to be successful and implement those wide-ranging Lib Dem policies. But even more so, we need Kirsty to a) to get credit for them and b) not get stuffed by her so called partners. As a party we failed dismally in those two areas last time. Now we can’t afford any more mistakes.

    Overall your comment does worry me. I would hope that those who were the clarion call for the previous mess would have re-assessed why it all went wrong, but perhaps the one lesson we learn from history is that very few people learn lessons from history.

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