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Labour should stop ‘looking through Westminster telescope’ and learn from Wales says Drakeford

27 Sep 2021 3 minutes Read
First Minister Mark Drakeford. Picture by the Welsh Government.

Labour should stop “looking at the world through a Westminster telescope” and learn from Welsh Labour’s example, Mark Drakeford will say at the Labour conference today.

The First Minister will give a speech to open a session on devolution in Brighton today.

He will say that the party should learn from other parts of the UK where Labour are winning elections rather than only analysing why they are failing to win power at Westminster.

“This conference is a chance to remind ourselves that despite being out of government at Westminster, Labour is in power, making a difference that only Labour can make, every single day, in places and communities right across Britain,” he is expected to say.

“When a political party has been out of power, at the UK level, for an extended period of time, then the need for soul-searching is obvious and necessary.

“It is right that we look hard at what we can and must do to win power again at Westminster.

“There’s a temptation look at the world through only a Westminster telescope and ask: “What went wrong?”

“But we should look at Labour’s many success stories across England, Scotland and Wales and understand what that tells us about how Labour can win the next General Election.

“In those success stories that we find a compelling answer to one of the most difficult challenges which all opposition parties face – even if our policies are popular, how can voters be confident that the party can translate those ideas into practice?

“The answer is: because we are already doing it and doing it, at scale, in large parts of the UK. In Parliaments, Town Halls and Mayoral offices across the land.

“From Manchester to Rhondda Cynon Taf; Dagenham to Swansea – across the country Labour is in power – standing up for individuals and communities and building innovative public services for the 21st century.”

‘Troubling’

The speech comes after a Welsh Labour MP publicly doubted whether the party would be able to win the next Westminster election.

Cynon Valley MP Beth Winter said the party lacked “radical, progressive policies”.

She said: “There has been a shift away from the pledges that he made when he was elected – a progressive tax system, raising a wealth tax, raising corporation tax, renationalisation of utilities, radical devolution of power throughout the UK nations.”

She added that she found it “really troubling” that internal wrangling over election processes was “overshadowing” the conference.

On Sunday, leader Keir Starmer’s plans to replace the one-member-one-vote system with an electoral college voting system for future leadership contests were dropped.

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Grayham Jones
26 days ago

It’s time for a new wales 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 kick all English party’s out of wales that’s the Tories Labour and all Brexit party’s stop being little Englanders and and be proud to be welsh the Labour Party have been a Disgrace for the Valleys of wales for years it’s time for a new wales 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿

Barry Pandy
Barry Pandy
26 days ago

The problem is that if Keir Starmer points to Labour’s record in Wales the right-wing press will immediately launch a propaganda offensive against the Welsh government in an effort to demonise Welsh Labour. Any successes will be ignored and any failing greatly exaggerated. Cameron did exactly this with his attacks on the Labour run NHS in Wales with his notorious ‘line of death’ BS which English voters were stupid enough to believe (helped on of course by the liars in the Mail, the Express, the Sun and the Telegraph). In actual fact there wasn’t a hell of a lot of… Read more »

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