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Thursday, August 30, 2007

Rhodri lays down the law

In this morning's Western Mail, Rhodri Morgan warns that a public clash between Labour and Plaid Cymru ministers in the coalition Assembly Government would be “hopelessly destructive”. What could he be thinking about?

Is it the signs of a growing Plaid Cymru revolt over their joint decision to allow an extra million tonnes of sand to be dredged from Helwick Bank? Or is it concern that the deal that has been stitched together to keep adult neurosurgery in Swansea and Cardiff will start to come apart under pressure from North Wales? It is certainly going to be difficult for the Assembly Member for Ynys Mon to continue to support this deal.

Plaid Cymru will have some difficulty adapting their usual popularist stance to the responsibilities of government and collective responsibility.

Could you clarify what the Lib dem position on this issue is. Do the Lib dems support the proposal to make people from North Wales needing brain surgery travel to Swansea?
This is not a party political issue Mark. My view is that I support the compromise that Edwina Hart has come up with however I have concerns about its sustainability and whether it will create problems in North Wales. It seems to me that the most satisfactory position is still to centralise South Wales neurosurgery in Swansea.
No more difficulty in adapting than the Liberal Democrats experienced during their joint term with Labour. Or the uncompromising line that has been needed to sort things out in County Halls in Cardiff, Swansea, Wrexham and Bridgend.
the only reason you say its not a party political issue is that you could never get your party to agree on it! There are huge rifts in the Lib Dem Assembly camp. Save Neurosurgery/scrap neurosurgery, do what ever will get you a vote surgery!
Actually that is not true. All six Lib Dem AMs agreed with the paragraph in the Rainbow Coalition agreement that neurosurgery for South Wales should be centred in Swansea. However, as with all local issues it is neither desirable or possible to get agreement within a party because of other local considerations. It is one reason why Plaid Cymru's attempt to hijack a genuine grassroots campaign to save Swansea's adult neurosurgery for party political reasons was so deplorable. Political opportunism at its worst.
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