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Plaid lost Rhondda because they ‘banged on’ about independence, says Labour MP

26 Aug 2021 2 minutes Read
Chris Bryant. Official portrait of Chris Bryant – UK Parliament (CC BY 3.0).

Plaid Cymru lost Rhondda at the Senedd election because it “banged on” about independence, according to a Labour MP.

Chris Bryant, who holds the seat at Westminster, said his party reclaimed the constituency from former Plaid leader Leanne Wood because “most voters didn’t care about the constitutional matters at all”.

Buffy Williams won the Valleys seat with a majority of 5,497 and a 19.1% swing.

Bryant made the comments during The Guardian’s Politics Weekly podcast, which discussed First Minister Mark Drakeford.

He said: “I think the most important thing that Labour generally needs to keep in front of its mind at every stage is that we want to be in government.

“We don’t just want to be a protest movement, and that is in essence I think what we learnt from the Welsh elections.

“I mean we worked very very hard in the Rhondda because as you know Plaid’s former leader Leanne Wood had taken the seat off us in the last, well it was Assembly elections then, and we wanted to make sure we won.

“We had the biggest swing to Labour of anywhere in the UK, 19% to Labour. I think that is because people in the Rhondda, A they trusted Mark Drakeford, B they thought Buffy was a great candidate.

“But equally it was because Plaid banged on and on and on, and the media supported them all the way through, including the Guardian is saying everybody now, everybody’s indycurious and all that kind of stuff, and actually most voters didn’t care about the constitutional matters at all.

“I detect absolutely no appetite for full blown independence.”

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R W
R W
1 month ago

One good thing has come from Leanne Wood losing the Rhondda at the Senedd elections. She is now free to take Bryant on at the next general election. Come on Leanne, give that annoying Unionist a good beating at the polls!! 👍

R. Tyler
R. Tyler
1 month ago
Reply to  R W

That’s an interesting prospect. Is it on the cards? I would love to see her boot that profiteering git into touch.

Last edited 1 month ago by R. Tyler
Alun
Alun
1 month ago
Reply to  R. Tyler

Yes, ‘Leanne Wood MP’ does have a ring to it…

Steve Duggan
Steve Duggan
1 month ago

You obviously have not felt the pulse of the Labour youth – Bryant. Unless Wales is treated with more respect and the neglect stopped by Westminster – then independence will happen quicker than you think. Times are changing, don’t rest on your laurels, regarding Rhondda, for long!

Ernie The Smallholder
Ernie The Smallholder
1 month ago
Reply to  Steve Duggan

That is so true, Steve. There really needs to be a social democrat/socialist movement for independence here in Wales. that is not confined by UK centralism. Welsh Labour must stand for independence & not promote career politicians for UK Westminster. ‘Labour 4 independence’ seems only to challenge seats already held by Plaid Cymru – which if they were to succeed would only weaken the case for independence since Welsh Labour still has its focus on Westminster and the centralised state. Plaid Cymru is the only party in the Welsh parliament that campaigns for Welsh independence. I must remind these in… Read more »

Quornby
Quornby
1 month ago

We’ll bang on until Indy you jerk.

CJPh
CJPh
1 month ago

One of the ultimate ironies of the political landscape in Wales is that many of the areas most in need of serious representation get shown the most contempt by the Westmisnter parties. Whatever side of the political compass the populace allows to hold the needle, the MPs for these areas are ineffectual dolts and doltesses by design. A do-nothing parachutee like Crosbie on Ynys Mon, that shady bloke in Bridgend, a Loose Women audience member in Swansea East and this glass of milk with a red rosette in the Rhondda. While you see largely settled, more affluent areas like Monmouth… Read more »

Huw Davies
Huw Davies
1 month ago

The stock answer to voting for, or not voting for Plaid, used to be ‘its a wasted vote, they’ll never be in power…’. The same answer now applies to voting Labour in Wales. They are never going to form another UK government without their old Scottish stronghold, especially when the constituency boundaries are changed and Welsh MP numbers are reduced. The choice is becoming Westminster Tories or Indy. Bryant knows, from the way Labour collapsed in Scotland, that Labour Wales is on borrowed time. The SNP went from 6 MPs in 2010 to 56 in 2015, mostly at Labour’s expense.

Leigh Richards
Leigh Richards
1 month ago

Nothing to do with local labour activists running a smear campaign against leanne on the doorsteps during the election? 🤔☹️

Y Cymro
Y Cymro
30 days ago

I’d like to inform morally void BritNat Chris Bryant that Plaid “bangs on” about creating a fairer more prosperous Wales that has the tools & levers of state to drag us out of the hole you bloody Unionists have to put us in. Remember, only two parties have solely held the reigns of power in Wales & Britain. Yes, Labour, you, and the Conservative. And post-devolution, Welsh Labour in Cardiff for 22yrs, yes 22yrs, and its those like-minded self-servatives who have overseen decades of dire poverty in our communities from north, south, easy & west including facilitating the coalfield &… Read more »

Last edited 29 days ago by Y Cymro
Ken end
Ken end
29 days ago

They lost because woods a dope.

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