Dafydd Elis-Thomas has written to Cheryl Gillan yo state he has no "constitutional objections" to it taking place on 5 May when the assembly elections and UK voting referendum are held.
Cost was the "overriding issue", he said.
And at Welsh Home Daran Hill has lent his support he wrote
“that if the Rubicon was indeed to be crossed, then why not go the whole damn hog? Why not hold the Assembly powers referendum on the first Thursday in May too? If we are to have a referendum on Assembly election day, then why not make it one that is at least related to that election? Let’s have a Super Thursday in May 2011”.
This is a rather defeatist argument. I would agree that on balance a Super Thursday would be better that having two referendums within a few months. However, as I have argued in earlier posts there is absolutely no reason to hold a vote on AV next year. 2012 would give ample time to prepare for the next General Election.. I could see an argument that if it would be on STV then time would be needed to prepare the new constituencies: But by its very nature AV does not even need tweaking of the boundaries.
It is in the interest of democracy that the Assembly elections and referendum should not be overshadowed by a UK issue. What price does Dafydd Elis Thomas place on this? When does it become too expensive?
We should have been having the referendum on Assembly powers this Autumn.
Actually.Why are we have a referendum just to fix a constitutional mess, seeking to transfer powers via a complex and baffling system?
Perhaps the referendum ballot paper should read something like this.
Do we really need a referendum just to clean up an over complex system?