Tag Archives: plaid cymru

Now comes the hard part

We Lib Dems have had a great three months. The local elections were good, the European elections outstanding, we got a high-profile defection from the crumbling Tiggers, and we’ve just won a by-election in a Leave area. We’ve even had our new leader going down very well among voters we need to attract.

But now comes the hard part. As the celebrations from Brecon & Radnorshire die down, we need to recognise that we only won there because the Greens and Plaid Cymru stood aside. It was the smart decision, but they will want something in return, indeed the Lib Dem brand is still mud in Green circles for our perceived lack of generosity in responding to the Greens’ offer to stand aside in 12 of our target seats in the 2017 general election.

We must therefore get our head around what we can usefully give in return, and anyone who remembers the difficulties of deciding who should stand in which seat when the Liberal and Social Democrat parties merged in the late 1980s will know it won’t be easy. It is not my job to carve up seats – wiser counsels are working on that – but there are a few things we Liberal Democrats would do well to get our heads around.

The main one is that we will have to give something up, and it will be painful. If we are to be politically mature and rise to the challenge of the Johnson/Farage regressive alliance, we will have to stand aside (or at least do no work) in seats where there will be dedicated Lib Dems who have worked their patch for years, and who will probably feel after the recent results that they’re finally on the verge of a breakthrough. Whether they really are or not is irrelevant – they will have worked for the Lib Dem cause yet it will feel as if they’re being asked to put the last five years’ work on the bonfire.

Having said that, in strategic terms, what we can usefully offer the Greens and Plaid may not cost us that much.

At the 2017 general election, there were 14 seats in which the Greens were ahead of the Lib Dems, and in 2015 the Greens came second to either Labour to the Tories in four. The chances of us winning these seats are negligible, and the likelihood of us winning other seats if we can ‘trade’ some of these 14 for the Greens assisting us in some of our targets is immense. Not every Lib Dem voter will vote Green (that’s something the Greens will have to suck up, just as not every Green voter will vote for us if there’s no Green candidate), but if the Greens stand aside in seats we can win to avoid splitting the Remain vote, in return for us doing the same in some of their targets, it could be a major gain at very little cost.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged and | 67 Comments

Plaid Cymru stand aside for Lib Dem Jane Dodds in Brecon and Radnorshire

Plaid Cymru have announced that they will not be fielding a candidate in the Brecon and Radnorshire by-electiion.

From the BBC

Lib Dem leader Sir Vince Cable told the BBC the partnership between the two parties was “a very welcome development”, and it made sense that “the two strongest Remain parties in Wales are going to work together”.

Adam Price, the leader of Plaid Cymru, said it was a “major step”, but it was “the right thing to do”.

He added: “We are facing one of the most significant decisions, as to whether we are going to be seemingly yanked out of the European Union even without a deal.

“Under those circumstances it is in Wales’s interest and our common interest to work together and coalesce the support for the Remain side in Wales.”

Both leaders hinted this could be the start of further co-operation between the parties, but neither were willing to be specific.

“There is no doubt that the co-operation that this is generating could well lead to wider measures,” Sir Vince said.

Candidate, and Welsh LIb Dem leader Jane Dodds welcomed the move:

Vince told The Times (£) that victory would tell the new Conservative Prime Minister that the “Conservative Party is in desperate trouble.”

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Kirsty Williams AM writes: Why Welsh Liberal Democrats and Plaid Cymru have joined forces

welsh-liberal-democratsThis week, and much to the surprise of many political commentators in Wales, Plaid Cymru leader Leanne Wood and I held a joint press conference announcing that we are to join forces to negotiate with the Welsh Labour Government on next year’s budget settlement.

In the National Assembly, the Welsh Government has exactly half of the Assembly Members. Therefore, each year the Welsh Government needs the support of at least one of the opposition parties to pass their annual budget. In the past, this has given the …

Posted in News, Op-eds and Wales | Also tagged , and | 15 Comments

Ofcom rejects SNP/Plaid objection to TV debate

A message from Ofcom brought this news today:

Ofcom today announced it has not upheld complaints received from the Scottish National Party (SNP) and Plaid Cymru about The First Election Debate broadcast on ITV1 at 8.30pm on Thursday 15 April 2010.  The political parties complained that the programme was not impartial and was also misleading.

The complaints were adjudicated by the Ofcom Election Committee which may consider complaints during an election period where it is considered that a substantive issue is raised and where the complaint, if upheld, might require redress before polling day.

The Committee considered all the submissions and evidence before it, in …

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Will the Tories do a deal with the nationalists to freeze the Lib Dems out?

According to this morning’s FT, the Conservatives are so anxious not to have to work with the Liberal Democrats that they are eying a post-election deal with the SNP, Plaid Cymru and even the DUP. Worried that Cameron will fail to gain an overall majority, Tory strategists are drawing up contingency plans with almost anything on offer to avoid having to face up to electoral reform.

Both the Scottish and Welsh Nationalists have made it clear that their price for working with any of the three main parties at Westminster would be a relative increase in the funding allocated to Scotland and Wales. The DUP are likewise going to seek more money for the Northern Ireland Assembly. This will not be easy for a government attempting to reduce the country’s huge deficit, whilst attemping not to upset its shire heartlands.

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Why Vote … – the other books reviewed

I’ve already reviewed two of the titles in the new seven book series from biteback: Why Vote Liberal Democrat and Why Vote. But what to make of the other fives titles – covers Labour, Conservative, Green, SNP and Plaid? (Although a UKIP book was also publicised, it never got published as UKIP failed to produce the necessary copy.)

Both the Labour and Conservative books are ‘unofficial’ in the sense that they are by prominent party members, but ones who have no official role in the party’s policy or campaigning decisions – Rachel Reeves, Labour …

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Y Barcud Oren #11

Can it really be party conference season already? In Wales it can, as Plaid pop off to Llandudno this weekend where no-one will notice them (so what’s new…) In any case, what self-respecting journalist is going to waste their time on things that are actually happening when there’s good speculatin’ to be had?

Leaving On A Rhoose Plane

The target of said speculation is of course Rhodri Morgan, whose stated retirement date (his 70th birthday) is now just over two weeks away. With departure supposedly imminent, the pretenders to the throne have crept back into the shadows to avoid the appearance of giving an extra shove on the way off the precipice (Jon Cruddas’ trip to Wales to essentially endorse Huw Lewis as the “properly lefty” candidate notwithstanding.)

Mind you, Rhodri couldn’t have done a better job fuelling the speculation if he’d tried.

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First Plaid and Labour vote for cuts, then they oppose them…

An interesting use of YouTube by the Welsh Liberal Democrats. As they put it, “On March 11th, Plaid Cymru and Labour AMs voted for cuts in FE funding. Three weeks later they protest with lecturers and students on the steps of the Senedd about FE cuts.”

Watch the story below (or via the YouTube website):

Posted in Lib Dem TV and Wales | 7 Comments

Y Barcud Oren #5

And now on ITV 17, “Welsh Labour Politicians Say The Stupidest Things”…

Excuse Me While I Hate Myself

Our first clip comes courtesy of Rhys Williams, the Labour PPC for Carmarthen East and Dinefwr. A strongly Welsh-speaking area, Carmarthen East and Dinefwr is fairly iconic for Plaid; it’s the successor to Gwynfor Evans’ old seat and is now represented by The Next Leader Of Plaid Cymru™ and The Minister For Smoking In The Eli Jenkins. Equally, having been held by Labour so recently, it’s also often identified as vital for Llafur in re-establishing its Welshness.

Nevertheless, Mr Williams went in all guns blazing in a magazine article, chastising the Welsh-speaking community for using the language as a weapon of exclusion. Not that he has any problem with individual Welsh speakers; that would after all be quite difficult as he is one himself…

In a competitive seat, it would indeed have been electoral suicide, but Plaid were already going to open a big can of electoral whupass on Mr Williams anyway, so for him the greatest consequence will likely be a reminder of his idiocy on BBC Wales’ election night coverage. In any case, no-hoper Llafur candidates saying stupid things quickly took a back seat as the professionals got into the game…

L’Etat, C’est Morgan

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Y Barcud Oren #4

Greetings from a less-than-snowy Cardiff, where the lack of meteorological chaos has allowed the business of devolution to continue unabated. More’s the pity…

Power To The Pobl

The big news is, of course, that the Welsh Language LCO is upon us. To the uninitiated (and, indeed, most of the initiated) it might seem strange that Welsh language powers aren’t already devolved, but that would be to assume that the current devolution settlement was designed with … well, anything really.

Not that the LCO does anything like devolving Welsh language powers anyway. Instead, it spends three pages caveating its way around the

Posted in Wales | Also tagged , , and | 5 Comments
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