Wednesday, 5 November 2008

Tories show their true colours

The Tories' long-awaited report on devolution has been published today. I'm sure they hope it will be buried- why else would they release it when everyone's attention is on America? In recent years, the Tories in Wales have gone out of their way to cultivate a Wales-friendly image. We've seen a new branding, Wales mentioned alot in their rhetoric, and plenty of sympathetic noises towards the Welsh language. They know that they can't make it in Wales without being a pro-Welsh party.

The report by Wyn Roberts on devolution shows that they're the same old Tories: anti-Welsh and out of touch. Wyn Roberts states that it is "generally believed" a referendum on further powers would not be won. Isn't the whole point of a referendum to measure public opinion?

It's also obvious that Wyn Roberts is out of touch with politics in Wales and also refers to us as a Principality (a term that is thankfully little-used in Welsh politics these days). Couldn't the Welsh Tories find someone who was a little more in touch to write this report?

Despite the fact that during the 2007 coalition negotiations the Tories were prepared to sign up to campaigning for a 'yes' vote in a future referendum, this report fails to commit to such a position. They have not even ruled out abolishing the Assembly altogether. As they come closer to gaining power in Westminster they are reverting to their true colours. Nick Bourne should come out and distance himself from this report. Otherwise, we can only conclude that previously warm words from the Tories on devolution were nothing more than hot air.

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