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‘Lazy arrogance’ of unionists ‘jeopardises union more than nationalists’

21 Mar 2021 2 minutes Read
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The “lazy arrogance” of unionists could “jeopardise” the union “more than nationalists”, a politics professor has suggested.

Laura McAllister, Professor of Public Policy and the Governance of Wales at Cardiff University, made the comments in an interview with State of the Union.

The former captain of the Wales national football team, who is a nominee for the FIFA Council, argued that there was a lot of middle ground between independence and scrapping the Senedd where a conversation could be had about alternatives to the status quo.

She said: “I just got a sense that that unionists would jeopardise the union more than nationalists because of that lazy arrogance.”

“I think unionists have to move away from the notion that there is only one form of constitutional organisation that is valid and others are regarded as distinctive or separate. I think that’s important.

“Then I think unionists have to really bottom out what is the concept of voluntary association that underpins the union.”

‘Alternatives’ 

She added: “It’s a useful and potentially constructive exercise for Welsh Labour to debate about alternatives to the status quo, and they don’t have to be independence or scrapping the [Senedd] altogether.

“I think there’s a lot of space in the middle there of the constitutional ground, where we could be having proper conversations about how a new UK might be cast.

Impact of the pandemic on devolution. “It’s been the biggest fillip to public understanding and consciousness of the distinctive governments of the UK.

“And one would expect that when the key public policy areas that are most relevant to Covid around health and around education and employment to a degree employment.

On fighting the election to be on the FIFA Council, she said: “I’m trying to meet with all 54 other UEFA nations. So that involves quite a lot of effort. But the good thing is, obviously, with Covid restrictions, I’m not able to travel around Europe meeting so I’m able to do more because it’s by Teams.”

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