Saturday, September 29, 2018

Is Plaid Cymru becoming a pro-Brexit party?

The previous Plaid Cymru leader, Leanne Wood was curiously reluctant to commit her party to a people's vote on the final deal that would enable the UK to stay in the EU, if voters decided that was the best course of action.

Her successor appears to be prepared to take that position one step further, and has gone public to outline how a no-deal Brexit will actually help to deliver his primary aim of an independent Wales.

To the casual observer, it would appear, despite warm words to the contrary, that Plaid Cymru has joined UKIP, and the right wing of the Tory Party as pro-Brexit parties, with self-interest as their chief motivation.

The Guardian reports quotes Adam Price as saying that a no-deal Brexit would lead to economic disaster for Wales and could strengthen the case for independence:

Adam Price, in an interview with the Guardian after replacing Leanne Wood as leader on Friday, said he backed the idea of a people’s vote on Brexit and that a “remain” option should be on the ballot paper.

But if a no-deal Brexit did bring about an economic crisis it could prompt more people in Wales to come to the conclusion that independence from Westminster may be the best option, he said.

Price made it clear that his first priority was to improve the party machine to put it in a position to win power at the next assembly elections in 2021.

The 50-year-old said: “We have to take every opportunity to end the cataclysm that is heading our way. If we are able to get a people’s vote we should take that opportunity and ‘remain’ should be on the ballot. “If we don’t avoid a no-deal Brexit, we are going to see an unravelling of the Welsh economy on a 1930s scale because of the importance of agriculture and manufacturing on our economy.

“We’re about stopping it but if it happens it will be a crisis on a huge level. We will have to think how best to defend ourselves in those circumstances and that may accelerate the path towards independence. It may be then that the people of Wales will want to move faster towards independence.”

It is a finely balanced position to take, and leaves Price open to misinterpretation. He won the leadership by arguing that Plaid Cymru needs to be much more open about its aim of an independent Wales, and then outlines a scenario whereby that might happen.

What is his actual position? It is little wonder that those committed to us remaining in the EU might think the Brexiteers have found a new ally in Adam Price.

1 comment:

  1. This reflects the situation in Scotland, where opinion surveys have shown that the most hard-line of nationalists want not only independence from the UK but also from the EU.


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