Monday, 29 August 2016

"Welsh" Labour try to claim Plaid have a leadership problem.

The Wasting Mule has  once again  allowed itself to be taken over  by  a "Welsh"  Labour with claims that Plaid Cymru has failed to see the surge in new members predicted when Leanne Wood was elected party leader four years ago, 

The most up-to-date data show Plaid ’s membership has barely increased since Ms Wood took over and that just 0.2% of the Welsh population are members of the self-proclaimed ‘Party of Wales’, said Labour .
In January 2012, at the time of Ms Wood’s election as leader, the Guardian reported the party’s membership as 7,863.

A House of Commons research paper on the membership of political parties states: “Plaid Cymru had 8,273 members as of July 2016, according to information from the party’s central office. This is a slight increase compared to 8,015 in December 2015. Ms Wood has tweeted that Plaid has “many members living outside Wales”.
Stephen Doughty, the Welsh Labour MP for Cardiff South and Penarth, who has taken time out from trying to overthrow the leader elected by his membership only a year ago said: 
“This is deeply embarrassing for Leanne and will no doubt fuel further unhappiness with her leadership that senior figures within Plaid already privately express. These figures show the extent of Plaid’s failure to reach out and win the trust of people outside their hardcore nationalist base in key communities across Wales.
“Plaid’s absence of new members matches the absence of a coherent political strategy under Leanne Wood which saw them moving activists out of seats they should have been looking to take in the Assembly elections.
"They call themselves the Party of Wales but in reality they are a party of personality, putting Leanne Wood’s own career prospects first. Only Carwyn Jones and Welsh Labour are providing leadership and working hard for the whole of Wales.”

So what are the figuers

 The research paper states: “According to the latest available estimates from political parties’ head offices, press releases and media estimates, the Labour Party has around 515,000 members; the Conservative Party had 149,800 members as of December 2013, the latest available estimate published by the party centrally; the Scottish National Party has around 120,000 members; the Liberal Democrat Party has 76,000 members; the Green Party (England and Wales) has 55,500 members; and Ukip has around 39,000 members.”
It adds: “Membership of the Conservatives, Labour and the Liberal Democrats has increased to around 1.6% of the electorate in 2016, compared to a historic low of 0.8% in 2013. Across the UK, Labour Party membership increased from 0.6% in 2013 to 1.1% in 2016.”

The Population of the UK is 65110000 and Wales 3063456
So my calculations  on a Uniform rate the various Party Membership in Wales would be

Lab  24230
Plaid 8,273 
Con 7048.
Lib/Den 3575
Green 2587 (England and Wales Figures only )
Ukip  1834

So by these figures Plaid Membership is quite healthy even without a surge though to emulate the SNP Plain would have a membership around 68418. which would really be a surge

A Plaid Cymru spokeswoman responded:
 “When the Tories announce cuts to the NHS and Labour implode in a leadership crisis which threatens their very existence, Labour choose to focus on this. It’s a pathetic diversion. Plaid Cymru has welcomed hundreds of new members since the EU referendum and Leanne Wood is polling as the most popular leader of any party in England and Wales.
“The Labour Party is engulfed by a bitter civil war which has seen them ban thousands of their own members from voting in their leadership election.
“Welsh public services and the economy continue to under-perform on the Labour Welsh Government’s watch, and while the Tories run roughshod over working people, Labour send out nonsense like this. No wonder they are in complete meltdown.”
One thing is clear either under Corbyn or Smith  there will be no progressive alliance moves coming from  Labour the arrogant belief particularly here in Wales that they have a God given right to the support of the people of Wales will continue.

Such a belief  was held (probably still) is in Scotland but they are now in third place and it would be interesting to see hat increase in Membership  Labour has had in Scotland  from those wishing to vote in the leadership contest compared to the UK as a whole.

At the moment Plaid are in a Catch 22 situation  where they need the publicity of winning seats to see an increase in those wishing to join . but they probably need an increase in membership  outside their heartlands in order to do so.

We can only wonder how many Labour members will remain with a still divided party after the election or Smith but for the moment I think  Stephen Doughty should concentrate on his own party problems and not the success or lack of it of another,



  1. Diversion tactics!

    Labour at the moment is bitterly divided over its leadership and facing complete meltdown. Their vote in the traditional working class areas is threatened by UKIP.

    What better way for the 'Whinging Wail' and Stephen Doughty to draw attention away from the massive problems Labour face and that's before you factor in Welsh Labour's dismal performance in Wales.

  2. I chuckled when i read stephen doughty telling his pals at Walesonline that this is 'deeply embarrassing for plaid' - this coming from someone whos party in wales has prevented numerous constituency parties from meeting for fear they will nominate jeremy corbyn as the labour leader.

    Plaid's 'problem' if it has one is the same one it's always been - not enough people in wales suport self government at this time. And until politics in wales goes in the same direction as in scotland this wont change whoever is Plaid leader, but no one can deny that Leanne hasnt raised plaid's profile with the welsh public.

    "One thing is clear either under Corbyn or Smith there will be no progressive alliance moves coming from Labour" - yes looks like youre right about that glyn, and have to say i would be disappointed with corbyn if that turns out to be the case. Not just because it means there'll probably be absolutely no chance of depriving the tories of a large majority at the next british general election but because it also betrays a lack of understanding of the situation in scotland in particular.

    Whatever their admirable idealism and enthusiasm the corbynistas dont seem to have woken up to the fact that the labour party is doomed in scotland, indeed if the labour party in scotland has any kind of future at all it would be as a completely seperate labour party in an independent scotland. On this issue groups like momentum seem to suffer from that traditional blind spot sections of the 'brit left' have always suffered from ie they will campaign all day long for statehood for the palestninans for example - and rightly so - but offer no such support to the right to statehood (should their people want it) for countries like scotland and wales.

  3. It was only a few months ago that Leanne Woods won the Rhondda seat. When she said that she was going to stand those same Labour sources said she had no chance. The Labour sources were wrong then and are wrong again now.