Showing posts from May, 2016

Time to get serious

This column appeared in the Llanelli Herald on May 20th Two weeks after the elections and Wales, at last, has a First Minister and a Cabinet. With 29 of the 60 seats in the Senedd Welsh Labour are by far the largest party, but we don’t have a majority of seats. Nor did we have the majority of votes cast. We all need to acknowledge that Wales has entered a new phase of multi-party politics. There are now five parties represented in the Assembly, and the style of politics that operated 50 years ago when two major parties dominated will no longer work in an environment where loyalties are fractured. I’m sorry that Plaid Cymru seem to be adopting such an aggressive posture in the Senedd. Firstly they tried to use their 12 AMs to launch an audacious power-grab in the Assembly - linking up with right-wing parties they swore in the campaign they’d steer clear of.  And this week, despite taking part in talks which allowed us to form a Government, refused to settle on a lon

We can do better than this

Speech delivered at the declaration of the Llanelli constituency on May 6th 2016 I was born and raised in this constituency, and I cannot tell you how proud I am to have been chosen by the people of my community to represent them in our National Assembly. I promise to do my very best, and to be true to myself. I’ve had some incredibly frustrating conversations over the last six months on the doorsteps of this constituency. Too many people have given up. Too many people want to talk about what we’ve lost in the last 30 years, and not enough want to set their minds to what we can do about it in the next 30 years. That’s what I want to try and change. I don’t have a magic wand. But I do have an intolerance for mediocrity. We can do better. But only if we demand more of ourselves. And only if we work together. I know there is genius in this constituency, and there is passion. Let’s harness it. Lets come together and focus on what we can agree on, not on what we disagree on.

A fresh voice for Llanelli

This column appeared in the Llanelli Herald on April 22nd In the final week of the campaign minds will focus on what’s at stake in this election. I’ve been very clear throughout that I’m not standing because I think everything is ok, I’m standing because I’m convinced we can do better and I want to do my bit to help. I’m not a party hack. I’ve been ITV’s Chief Political Correspondent for Wales and now run the leading independent policy institute, the IWA. I have a mind of my own and I will not hesitate to speak up, or speak out, to fight for the whole of the Llanelli constituency. Our National Assembly reaches adulthood next year - it will have been in existence for 18 years. And it is time for a new generation of people to energise the Assembly. My priority will be to develop a long-term economic plan for the Llanelli constituency. In the thousands of conversations I’ve been having over recent months I’ve been struck by the despondency that has set in - too many people are resigned t