Monday, 22 February 2016

Why did Labour ignore Plaid at thier Welsh Conference?

  Wales Online asked a number of  Labour Politicians a number of question and being Labour Politicians  they more or less gave the same answers,

When it came to  

If Labour wins the Assembly election which party will finish second?

Most followed the line of  their conference  agenda and said the Tories

 Jo Stevens MP, Cardiff Central however give an interesting  answer

"I hope it's not Ukip and I don't think Plaid will so it pains me to say it but the Tories".
 Which to me suggest that she at least would prefer it to be Plaid.

It could be because she does not share the inherent hostility to Plaid that exists in Labour in Wales or maybe she does not see  Plaid as a threat to Labour's Hegemony.

Maybe Labour are wise to have concentrated on the Tories after Welsh First Minister  disastrous attempt to have one to one debate with Ukip leader Nigel Farage.
Labour has spent its spring conference talking up the straight battle with the Conservatives for National Assembly power and admitting more needs to be done to win votes back from Ukip.

But little has been said about the challenge from Plaid Cymru.

“We think this is a battle between Labour and the Tories,” Mr Jones insisted.
“We know that in many parts of Wales the marginal seats are fought between our party and the Tories and it’s important to remind people what the stakes are in this election.

“With Ukip we know that they have the potential to take not seats away from us but votes away from us that would cause us problems in some seats in Wales.

“We have said to people we understand if you are annoyed, we understand if you’re angry, we are listening - we want to remove the reasons for people to vote Ukip. That’s what my speech was about.

“We see them as our main challengers - Conservatives in terms of a straight fight, Ukip in terms of the votes they might take but less so in terms of seats. “If you look at the seats that are the most marginal in Wales, most of them are seats that involve us and the Tories, and we know that is where the fight, as it always has been, will be.
Asked if he had avoided attacking Plaid in case he needed to rely on their support to form a coalition government after May’s election, Mr Jones said:
  “I don’t expect that when Plaid have their conference that they won’t mention me or Labour, that’s the way politics is.

“We all understand it and parties must make their case robustly at times. But we just see the Tories as the main threat.”
So do Do Welsh Labour not se Plaid as a threat or potential allies after Nay?

Either way it doesn't help Plaid 
After all  as Oscar Wilde put it.

 "There is only one thing in the world worse than being talked about, and that is not being talked about."
Plaid might secretly be worried that Labour  ignore them in Assembly Elections .

After all in Scotland even with most of the UK and Scottish Media behind them with the SNPBad message  it seems to have concentrated support for the SNP government rather than  weaken it.

Perhaps Plaid spring conference will see Plaid taking the Gloves off and attacking Labour's record in Wales.

After all it is that what the electorate should be making their judgement.



  1. Glyn I imagine that Labour in Wales are hoping that Plaid go away if they do not mention them, here the SNP seem to be all the rest do talk about, we are though ignored by the press, well journalism ain't what it used to be as both the print media and the broadcast media concentrate solely here on Labour. I am still surprised that more people, Welsh People do not consider Plaid as an alternative to Labour, we have seen through them for the useless tossers they are. We are being bombarded with the old Tartan Tory propaganda which is a bit rich coming from a Party which abstains rather than stick it's head over the parapet and fight Tory Cuts. We describe them here as the Red Tories, and I would actually hate to be an activist for them (I believe bussed in from down South, they certainly were for the GE) they will have to be made of stern stuff as door after door is slammed in their face if the polls are correct.

    1. you might not be tartan tories but it appears you'd rather impose cuts than increase income tax in scotland - surely a left of centre party should opt for the latter over the former?

  2. I’m a supporter of Welsh independence, but even I acknowledge Plaid Cymru is now the fourth party in Wales, even if they’re ahead of UKIP in seats in May they wont be in vote share for the second election in a row and no amount of spinning changes that fact how uncomfortable for us.

    And while its certainly not all Leanne Wood’s fault, her leadership doesn’t help, she’s unlikely to win the Rhondda and will lead the party to its worst Welsh Assembly results since devolution began, but probably end up in Government as the junior party destroying Plaid Cymru for a generation.

    On that evidence Labour can afford to dismiss Plaid Cymru and are laughing all the way to at least another 30 years of unchallenged government although I’m not sure the Welsh Assembly will survive that long.

    1. Bit hard on leanne anon - to be fair it's difficult to think how anyone else leading plaid could have resisted the ukip surge in wales.Do you really think elin jones would have done any better? But ukip's apparent support in wales isnt just a matter for plaid cymru activists to worry about - it should concern all of us on the progressive side of welsh politics. We should all be asking ourselves how on earth such a right wing party has managed tp pick up the votes of so many working class voters in a traditionally left leaning country like wales?

      On the upside - as bbc wales are reporting today - we should never underestimate the capacity of the kippers to self destruct :)

  3. Hello, Glyn

    I was at the Welsh Labour Conference from beginning to end, and there was indeed no mention Plaid, not just from the platform but there was also little mention of Plaid Cymru in the informal chatter (in both languages) in the bars and hotel lounges. It's not that the Welsh Labour Party dislikes Plaid; it's simply that Plaid is not seen as a threat throughout Wales. There was a lot more mention of UKIP, and I am confident that the Labour Party is the only one countering UKIP's nationalist rhetoric in conversations on the doorstep. Some delegates told me that they have never seen a Plaid Cymru campaigner, and the feeling was that, like UKIP, Plaid depends too much on printed materials delivered by the postman.Plaid will not be destroyed in May as one of your correspondents suggests.

    Incidentally, with over 800 participants in Llandudno, this was the largest ever Welsh Labour Conference, with large numbers of young people. There was a whiff of quiet confidence in the air.

    I think you're wrong to imagine "inherent hostility to Plaid that exists in Labour in Wales". It is simply not there. Certainly on Conwy County Council Labour and Plaid work together well for the good of the county.

    Carwyn Jones is right to see the Conservatives as the main threat to the wellbeing of Wales.