.comment-link {margin-left:.6em;}

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

A question of timing

New insider blog, Ministerial Briefs, reports that the deadline for recalling the Assembly in readiness for a Wednesday 30 May meeting to elect a First Minister is Friday 25 May. This is going to cause a few problems for those parties committed to consulting their members on any deal.

Welsh Liberal Democrats are due to convene a special conference on Saturday 26 May in Aberystwyth. I believe that Plaid Cymru's Council will be meeting on the same day. If either party has signed up to a deal subject to member endorsement then the pressure to back the leader will be immense. That does not facilitate open debate and good decision-making.

There is talk about holding the Welsh Liberal Democrat Conference earlier in the week on an evening in mid-Wales. Such a decision would inevitably exclude many members and leave the whole process open to challenge. Party chiefs may just have to stick to plan 'A' and hope for the best.

In reality, leaving the Special Conference to the very last minute was always going to be risky. Even if the PO could have called the Plenary meeting on 28th May there would have been no time to go back, re-negotiate and then ask members to reconsider. Whatever we are being asked to vote for needs to have widespread support in advance of the Conference if a crisis is to be avoided.
"Such a decision would inevitably exclude many members.."

Why? These people get PAID for doing this job.
Which people? We are a democratic party made up of thousands of volunteer members. We have a process that involves those members voting on any deal at a Conference. None of them will be paid for doing that. In fact all will have to pay themselves to travel to Aberystwyth, register and feed themselves there. Nobody is complaining about that but it is not the sort of professional organisation you imagine.
I think he got Assembly members mixed up with Party Members
In that case will any deal with the Lib/Dems involve a long process of consulting members every time there's vote on an important issue?
No, there is a specific process in place before the party becomes involved in a coalition or some other similar arrangement that requires the approval of a special conference. It is the process we entered into in 2000 and it is one we will use this year as well. It only applies to those circumstances.
Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?