Being elected to the Senedd is a ‘great honour’, says anti-devolution Tory
Being elected to the Senedd is a “great honour”, according to Tory who said he wants the institution to be scrapped.
Joel James, who became the Conservative MS for South Wales Central at the last election, promised to “campaign to end devolution in Wales” on his application to become a candidate.
But more recently, on the conservative blog Gwydir, he said although his views on devolution have been “well noted by the press and media”, he was honoured to have been elected to the Welsh Parliament “nonetheless”.
James who is the Shadow Minister for Social Partnership, also paid tribute to his pro-devolution predecessor, David Melding, for his “intellectual rigor”, adding he would be “sorely missed”.
He went to suggest that although his new social partnership brief “doesn’t automatically feel associated” with the Conservatives, the party has a “proud history of social reform”
On his application to be a Conservative candidate at the Senedd election, he wrote: “I will challenge the cosy Cardiff Bay consensus that has underachieved for Wales for so long, I will continue to push Welsh Labour out of south Wales, and I will campaign to end devolution in Wales.”
He wrote the conservative Gwydir blog: “My views on the institution have been well noted by the press and media, but I nonetheless see this as a great honour, and I am extremely grateful for the trust and support that the South Wales Central electorate and membership have placed in me.
“I not only look forward to delivering on the pledges that I have made, but I also look forward to working closely with my regional colleague Andrew RT Davies, as we hold the ruling Labour Welsh Government to account, and deliver for the people of Wales.
“It would also be remiss of me if I didn’t take this opportunity to pay tribute and thank former South Wales Central regional member David Melding, who retired from the Senedd at this year’s elections.
“David has been of immense support to me over the years, and his intellectual rigor will be sorely missed by the Welsh Conservative Party.
“I hope that I will be able to live up to standard that he set, and I look forward to addressing my first shadow ministerial brief: that of Social Partnership.
“It’s a brief that doesn’t automatically feel associated with the Conservative Party, but as the Party that first recognised the legitimacy of the trade unions and has a proud history of social reform, this could not be any further from the truth.