Plaid Cymru, Liberal Democrats and Greens strike electoral pact for General Election
Plaid Cymru, the Liberal Democrats and Green Party have come to what they call a “historic agreement” to elect more pro-Remain MPs from Wales.
The full extent of the deal will be announced tomorrow (Thursday) but it is expected that the Liberal Democrats will step aside for Plaid Cymru in Arfon, Carmarthen East and Dinefwr, and Dwyfor Meirionydd.
Plaid Cymru are expected to announce that they will step aside in Cardiff Central, Brecon and Radnorshire, and Montgomeryshire.
Five other unspecified seats are also expected to be part of the deal.
The alliance between the Liberal Democrats and Greens also covers 49 seats in England.
“Tonight we can confirm that we in Plaid Cymru, together with the Liberal Democrats and the Green Party, have reached an historic agreement in this December’s general election,” a Plaid Cymru spokesperson said.
“Our discussions with the other parties have been ongoing for some months, and a lot of hard work has gone into securing an arrangement that offers Wales the opportunity to elect a large number of MPs from pro-Remain parties.
“This is the right thing to do in the national interest. In the face of Brexit, we – as Wales’ lead Remain party – must show sensible and mature leadership which puts Wales first. That’s what this arrangement represents.
“This election is different to others, and the stakes have never been higher for the future of Wales.
“By reaching this agreement, we are maximising the possibility of electing more pro-Remain MPs from Wales to keep up the fight against Brexit, and to keep Wales in the EU.
“This election also offers us the best opportunity we’ve ever had to elect the largest number of Plaid Cymru MPs in our party’s history to stand up to Westminster establishment – and put Wales first.
“Because that’s what Plaid Cymru always does. Our country, our communities, and the best interests of our nation are always our first and foremost priority.”
Peter Dunphy, the former Lib Dem treasurer who is a director of Unite to Remain, told the Guardian newspaper that Brecon and Radnorshire had been a successful test-case of the approach.
“People want to back a winner, people want to back a contender,” he said.
He conceded that in some cases the remain alliance would be fielding candidates against sitting Labour MPs, but said the group’s main aim was to reduce the number of Brexit-backing MPs in parliament, most of whom were Conservatives.
“What we have sought to do is focus on the bigger picture,” he said.