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Thursday, February 10, 2005

Plaid Cymru hit socialist brick wall

Plaid Cymru got themselves in a bit of trouble yesterday when they tabled an amendment to a motion on child poverty stating their belief that New Labour has abandoned the socialist principle of redistributing wealth. Their Deputy Leader, Rhodri Glyn Thomas, was in full flow, when he was interrupted by Neath AM, Gwenda Thomas:

The Minister tells us that the UK Government is successful in its actions to eradicate child poverty. Can she therefore explain why one of Tony Blair’s closest advisers, Lord Gidden, the architect of the third way, says that Labour has not done enough for the poor? He says, ‘New Labour should make a commitment to a renewed egalitarianism.’

Gwenda Thomas: Will you give way?
Rhodri Glyn Thomas: Let me just finish the quotation, so that you are in a position to respond to it. 'There is something out of kilter to New Labour’s perspective. It has given so much commitment to public services but there is no parallel integrated commitment really to secure a more socially just society.’ Perhaps you would like to respond to those comments, Gwenda.

Gwenda Thomas: Yes. On being socially just, I refer to your fourth amendment and to the views of a senior member of your party, Eurfyl ap Gwynedd, who was charged with the thankless task of reviewing your wish-list of a draft general election manifesto. He admitted that, under Labour, there has been significant redistribution. Was your senior party member wrong, or will you now vote against your own amendment?

Rhodri Glyn Thomas: I was not aware that Eurfyl ap Gwilym—and it would be nice if you got his name right, if you are going to refer to him—held any office in Plaid Cymru.

David Melding: He does not now. [Laughter.]

There was no way back after that.

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