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Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Momentum builds

On the BBC website Adrian Browne speculates that the rainbow coalition option has not yet faded from Cardiff Bay. He may well be right. However, from conversations I have had today it is becoming clear that the Plaid-Labour coalition is starting to gather momentum within both of those parties.

I have heard that some very senior and influential Plaid Cymru members are promoting the idea of going into government with Labour. Their view is that this is the best chance of getting a referendum on a full Parliament and they intend use that argument to try and sell the deal to more sceptical colleagues. Ieuan Wyn Jones may well give up the chance to be First Minister but he would claim that he is sacrificing personal ambition so as to secure a proper devolution settlement for Wales.

On the Labour side I understand that the prospect of losing power has concentrated minds quite sharply. Detailed talks have been on-going involving Labour AMs who in the past have been the scourge of Plaid Cymru in the chamber and elsewhere. Rhodri Morgan has gone up to Westminster to try and convince the MPs and I have been told that Gordon Brown himself has agreed to push the referendum through Westminster when it is required. He does not fancy the idea of having to deal with three non-Labour First Ministers once he takes over from Tony Blair.

Calls for a special conference are a diversionary tactic. It has already been agreed that this is to happen. No doubt it was considered that to coalesce with Plaid without one would cause too big a row and that a vote of party members would be the best way to settle things down quickly.

All the cards are in Plaid Cymru's hands. Bethan Jenkins has revealed that it is the Plaid Cymru Assembly group, who will ultimately make the decision on the preferred option not the party's executive. However, the meeting on Saturday will be the first indication of how opinion in the party is going. We really do live in interesting times.
Any ideas for the Welsh Blog Awards 2007?

What is the difference between a 'senior' and a 'very senior' member of Plaid?
Sanddef, I have looked at the Welsh blog award site and most of the bases seem to have been covered in the comments.

Patriot, a very senior member of Plaid is one who has been Party President.
There are two former presidents of Plaid still living. One carries great deal of weight within the party the other virtually none.

I suspect peters source is the latter.
I thought every senior member of Plaid has been some sort of party president
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