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Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Breaking News

The Labour Assembly Government has laid the final budget without any agreement with the opposition. This is the joint statement the opposition parties have just put out:

“Last night’s budget discussions failed to reach a satisfactory conclusion. However, there is still time for a deal to be reached which can meet the demands of all parties, and which would be in the best interests of the people of Wales.

“Laying a budget without the agreement of the opposition would be an act of folly. Negotiations so far have succeeded in settling many of the original issues. We would wish to see them continue so that the budget can be approved by the whole Assembly.”

Indications at the moment are that all three parties and the two independents are fairly solid on this and will vote it down. I will report further when I have more information.

Update: The three opposition party leaders held a press conference this afternoon in which they all said that they would be prepared to form a coalition government should Labour resign over the defeat of their budget. At about the same time Rhodri Morgan made it clear he would give them that opportunity by quitting if he loses the key vote next Wednesday.

Since then both the First Minister and the Plaid Cymru leader have been back-pedalling like fury. The media still have a story but the prospect of a change of government and all that entails has been denied them. Some of them are rather disappointed. It has been a seven hour roller-coaster ride and there is still eight days to go before the debate. Expect a lot more drama.
"both the First Minister and the Plaid Cymru leader have been back-pedalling like fury"

Care to elaborate a little further on that?
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