Call for Senedd to return to elections every four years as Westminster poised to scrap fixed terms
A Labour Senedd Member has called for the Welsh parliament to return to four-year terms in the future as Westminster looks set to scrap its Fixed Term Parliament Act.
The Fixed Term Parliament Act, brought up under the 2010 Conservative-Lib Dem Coalition, sought to ensure that Westminster elections took place at a regular rhythm of every five years.
As a result, the Senedd also set its terms at five rather than four years in order that Welsh elections did not clash with any future Westminster ones, as they would otherwise have done in 2015.
However, the Fixed Term Parliament Act has since been overruled twice, with General Elections taking place in 2017 and 2019 despite only two years having elapsed since the last poll.
MPs will today debate scrapping the act altogether. The Conservative Party, currently in government, is committed to repealing the act, returning the power to ask the Monarch to call an election to the Prime Minister rather than requiring a vote at Westminster.
The Dissolution and Calling of Parliament Bill will get its Second Reading at Westminster later today.
Labour backbencher Alun Davies, MS for Blaenau Gwent, said that this should prompt the Senedd to return to its normal routine of elections every four years.
“Westminster is debating the repeal of the Fixed Term Parliament Act today,” he said. “This means that our Senedd can return to four-year terms. This is a reform I will be proposing as soon as possible.”
That would mean that the next Senedd election would take place in 2025 rather than 2026.