New director of Institute of Welsh Affairs publishes hard-hitting critique of shortfalls of Labour-run Welsh Government

Lee Waters, writing in the latest issue of the Institute of Welsh Affairs magazine ‘Agenda’, warns that the Labour election slogan of standing up for Wales is not a delivery strategy. But he goes on to make some less obvious and interesting points.
(See a full report here:

His hard-hitting critique of the Welsh Governments record also includes criticism of the traditional opposition parties that he describes as “can be bought off with an odd bit of pork barrel”. Turning his attention to the Labour cabinet, he states: There is no clear articulation of what the Welsh Government is trying to achieve”, in no small part to the lack of leadership from First Minister, Bridgend AM, Carwyn Jones, who he argues has not demonstrated a consistent drive to get a grip of the machinery of Government or set a coherent framework for the diffuse agendas of his ministers.

Mr Waters argues that the politics of Westminster make it politically impossible for Plaid Cymru to form a coalition with the parties in power in Whitehall.
He claims Plaid leader Leanne Woods decision to put the case for independence at the front and centre of her partys platform makes the chances of another One Wales coalition with Labour seem remote.

Arguing that the lack of a threatening opposition takes the pressure off a first minister who appears to be coasting, he writes: The cumulative impact is to give Carwyn Jones breathing space…. Even though he does not have an overall majority of AMs at his command, the First Minister isnt worried about being defeated.

To date Labour has been able to pick off opposition parties to agree ad hoc deals to get its annual budget through… In exchange for the odd bit of pork barrel they seem content to let him carry on. If politics is about gaining and exercising power, they clearly have not read the memo.

This last point needs to be our clarion call!

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