Tuesday, 4 September 2012

Jones gets the job

“Jones is not universally popular and Crabb is thought to have the edge between the two in the esteem of the Prime Minister. But the chances of either getting the job are low.” Yesterday’s blog. How wrong it was.
Well, it was right in predicting that Cheryl Gillan would go, but it was completely off the mark in who her replacement would be. Clearly, prophesy is not a profession the blogger should take up.
The choice of David Jones provides Wales with its first Tory Secretary of State for Wales from a Welsh constituency since Nicholas Edwards in those far off days when Mrs Thatcher was waving her handbag.
David Jones started his political journey in the Assembly. He took over the North Wales seat following Rod Richards resignation from the Assembly.  
Mind you his stay in the Assembly was short, only long enough to sign the register declaring his membership of the freemasons. Apart from any ambitions he might have in the Lodge it was always Westminster that he had in his sight. 
Not a great fan of devolution. A likely cause of some tension with many an Assembly AM, not least Darren Miller the Assembly Member for Clwyd West. 
Although Conservative officials were spinning that co-ordination would be easier now and Andrew R T Davies was the first person that was contacted by the new Secretary of State.
The other member that was in the frame for the job Maria Miller MP for Basingstoke, gets Culture and with it responsibility for S4C. So instead of cosy talks with Carwyn Jones about their old School it will be Cymdeithas yr Iaith that will be doing the chatting.
Back to David Jones. He is a Welsh speaker, only the second bilingual Conservative in the post.  The first being Peter Thomas. Although by the time he was Secretary of State he had been turned out of his Welsh seat and was then a member for Hendon. 
The post of Welsh Secretary is a bridge between the Welsh Government and the Westminster one. It will be interesting to see how David Jones fulfills the role.
On the wider reshuffle with none of the major departments changing hands it is difficult to see how the new faces in these middle ranking portfolios will refresh the governments image. 
It’s still the economy, stupid. And with no changes in those that manage the economy it will be business, or the lack of it, as usual.


  1. Labour can't attack him for not being Welsh or a Welsh speaker but in every other way he's as bad an appointment to the Welsh Secretary's job as the Tories could have made.

  2. There are many in the Conservative group in the Assembly that are saying similar things, but off the record of course.

  3. The fact that your contacts didn't mention him must surely be a good point for the guy. And his dismissive thoughts regarding the Assembly another good point. He's a man. He's Welsh and Welsh speaking. The points keep stacking up.

    An inspired appointment?

  4. And his first priority for Wales... 'delivering' a new nuclear power plant at Wylfa!

    Wales is in a mess, the last thing we need is a nuclear legacy built to supply England with electricity, when most countries are sensibly turning their back on that technology.

  5. Looks and sounds like a Thatcherite Alan B'stard kinda Tory. What's his background story?

  6. If only there were more Conservatives in the Conservative Assembly group.

  7. Is Health not a major department then?

  8. Naturally, the main stirrer over Jones' appointment will be Darren Miller, but then he stirs against everybody, not least Nick Bourne and Andrew RT. He was also so rude to Cheryl Gillan than he had to be told to shut up by other AMs. I wonder why he is so disruptive? Frustrated ambition? His own fault.