Adam Price rejects suggestion putting independence at ‘centre’ of election campaign was a ‘mistake’
Adam Price has rejected the suggestion that “putting independence front and centre” of the 2021 Senedd election campaign was a “mistake”.
The Plaid Cymru Leader, who will address his party’s Annual Virtual Conference later on today, said he didn’t think it “made any substantial difference to the outcome”.
But he did say there were things he would have “done differently” in “retrospect”, some of them “practical issues” to do with his party’s election machine, and others to do with “political strategy”.
His party increased the number of seats it has in the Senedd from 12 to 13, while the Conservatives went from 11 to 16, and Labour went from 29 to 30.
During an interview with WalesOnline, it was put to Price that his party “didn’t make the progress” it “wanted it to” in “terms of votes and seats”.
It was suggested that because of this “putting independence front and centre was a mistake”.
Price replied: “No, I don’t think that made any substantial difference to the outcome of the election. I think we gained votes in some areas and we lost in some.
“But it wasn’t a net negative in the sense that you raised the question. Did it explain the the result which didn’t give us the progress that we would have liked to create? We did go up one seat rather than going down but obviously it wasn’t the level that I had hoped for. However, I don’t think independence is the key explanatory factor.
He added: “I think in any election campaign there are always things in retrospect that you would have done differently and we’ve gone through a fairly detailed process led by Dafydd Trystan identifying some of those lessons learned and we’re working through implementing those recommendations.
“Some of them are sort of fairly practical, almost technical issues around the election machine, which are relatively easy to identify and relatively easy to solve. Some of them are more strategic questions, and which are more about the political strategy of the party, and we were doing a lot of deep thinking around this and I’ll have more to say about this in the new year.”
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Independence is the only way forward we in wales 🏴 have got to stop being little Englanders and be proud to be welsh start fighting for your children and grandchildren future in wales 🏴 kick all English party’s out of wales 🏴 it’s time for a new wales 🏴
We should put it front and centre every election. Every vote for Plaid Cymru will build a mandate. There’s obviously a great deal more that Plaid can do out on the election trail but it should all point towards building a new democratic Welsh State and how we use that to rebuild our economy and communities.
Part of their problem in the last election was that Welsh Labour share many of their principles and occupy the space that Plaid occupy. The big difference between the two parties is their position on independence, and it was too soon for Adam Price to be promoting it, making it at least a factor in Plaid’s failure to capture the Senedd in May 2021. That is likely to change after several more years of Westminster Tory attacks on devolution. The current agreement between the two parties, reflecting the general mood of the country, is likely to raise Plaid’s stock among… Read more »
Plaid Cymru’s failure to make more than one gain in May was owing to several factors: 1/ their policies overlap with those of the Welsh Government; 2/ it was the wrong time to be debating independence with so much uncertainty after Brexit; 3/ Drakeford’s relatively successful handling of the pandemic; 4/ the Welsh electorate reacted to Johnson’s assault on devolution by looking to the incumbent party to stand up for devolution and to push for more of it. The policy agreement between the two parties is likely to win Plaid more approval from the Welsh electorate without adversely affecting Welsh… Read more »
The key factor was not the independence question (which was very badly handled and equally badly explained) but a party that lacked any kind of organisation or clear, practical policies. The party had five years to prepare, find candidates, build a machine, send the message. None of this was done. In Gower where I live, there have been different candidates for every election, this time the candidate was up for a second time but silent. His election address consisted of his success in the Swansea soup run and assisting nuns in a nearby convent fix their roof. Very admirable, but… Read more »