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Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Plaid Cymru keep digging on tuition fees

A Welsh Noted translation of a Politics Cymru post reveals that Plaid Cymru Assembly Members are becoming more committed to the introduction of top-up fees for Welsh students despite their manifesto promises to the contrary. All is not sweetness and light within their group however:

In a press conference yesterday Elin Jones confirmed that she and her fellow Plaid ministers at the Assembly are planning to back the Government's plans to introduce top-up fees. This is in spite of the fact that the party voted against such a move in Aberystwyth on Saturday.

We also found out that two Plaid Assembly Members had asked to be excused from any future votes.........Elin Jones said that "the majority" of the Assembly group were supportive of the idea.

This has the potential to be very embarrassing for the party.
This is getting boring. We know Plaid Cymru has totally lost their way. They've totally lost the plot. They've totally lost their integrity. Hopefully soon they'll totally lose their electorate. They've totally abandoned Owain Glyndwr and Saunders Lewis and Gwynfor Evans and Dafydd Wigley and so tragically they have abandoned Wales and its people - Y Gwerin. The word "Brad" comes to mind.
Plaid's biggest failing at the moment is its honesty - there is a genuine disagreement about policy and (shock horror) it's being played out in public.

Peter might enjoy it as a voyeur, but I imagine he'd be the first to cover up division within his own party.
No I have no problem with their 'honesty' and have indulged myself in saying in public what I think I need to say to jolt my own party out of its complacency. That is a fact that might blunt your proposition that I would do something differently. Plaid's problem is in fact its dishonesty in suggesting that it can hold two positions at the same time and not take responsibility for either of them.
Peter's absolutely right about the irresponsibility problem, but this particular addition to the story is important because it really calls into question Elin Jones' political savvy.

I'm sure she could have found a way to spin this decision to minimise the damage to herself (along the lines of "I voted against in cabinet...") but instead what she takes back to her sizeable student electorate is a Charge of the Light Brigade-esque two-fingered salute...
When Plaid's Leanne Wood appeared on the AMPM programme she didn't sound at all committed to top up fees. She said it was a compromise too far. I wonder how she'll vote?
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