Tuesday, 10 May 2011

Labour to dance alone - for the moment!

Labour have decided to go it alone despite not having a majority.  The party fell short of an outright majority and it is true if there was only a first past the post system for a  40 seated Assembly they would have had 28 seats. Over twice the seats gained by the other parties. However, it's a 60 seat Assembly, with a top up regional  element. 

Although the current system was devised to give the other parties a look in. Raising the possibility in a good year of having an overall majority between them all and the  prospect of perhaps unseating Labour should they be able to agree amongst themselves. That  prospect came close to being realized in 2007 with the prospect of what was called a 'rainbow coalition.'However, in 2011 the system did favour Labour slightly, by given them half the seat with only 44 per cent of the votes overall.

Ian Lucas the  Labour Member of Parliament for Wrexham has argued on the airwaves, that the system needs changing as it is unfair to Labour. Presumably he is arguing for the scrapping of the current system and going back to the first past the post system. 

Many less tribal politicians would argue such a system would be unhealthy for democracy and could lead to practices and excesses on an all-Wales basis that were associated with some of those old Welsh Labour controlled County Councils. One party rule for ever and a day. Surely, that should not be wished for. 

To be fair to Carwyn Jones it is not something that he has any interest in. 
Although taking over the sole reins of government for his party he has made it clear "over the coming weeks and months, I will have ongoing discussions with the other parties about what shape this role will take, but some time and space must be afforded to opposition parties for them to consider what this election has meant for them, what the electorate has said to them, and how they wish to interpret that message." 

So there is a prospect that Wales coould be world leaders  in introducing grown up politics. Now that would be radical idea. But whatever Carwyn Jones's aspirations, he must be aware that there are many dinosaurs around, not least in his own party that would prevent such an innovation.


  1. Nowe Labour have a majority of two, so there is no need for discussions with other little parties.