Scottish independence would ‘change the views’ of Labour politicians in Wales, says Plaid MS
A Plaid Cymru MS has said it would “change the views” of Labour politicians in Wales if Scotland becomes independent.
Rhys ab Owen, the South Wales Central regional Senedd member for the pro-independence party, was reacting to an opinion poll which suggested that the SNP would gain five extra seats, taking its total to 53, if a general election were held tomorrow.
The Panelbase survey for the Sunday Times was conducted in the wake of allegations of Tory sleaze in Westminster.
It puts backing for the SNP at Westminster elections at 48%, which is up one point since September.
Support for the Conservatives has slipped two points to 21%, which would see them lose half their existing seats. Support for Labour is up one at 20% and the Liberal Democrats are unchanged on 7%.
The survey also showed a rise in support for independence in Scotland to 49%, while support for remaining in the UK has a slender lead at 51%.
Rhys ab Owen told Express.co.uk: “What I would say is, Scottish independence would be a huge gamechanger in Wales.
“If they did get independence, obviously it would change the United Kingdom because Scotland wouldn’t be part of it.”
He suggested that Scottish independence would “change the views” of “many people” in Wales.
He said: “For example I think it would change the view of many in elected positions within the Labour Party in Wales.
“We’re bound to look at Scotland and a lot within the national movement in Wales if not the vast majority will look at Scotland with envy.
“You know, how they managed to get rid of the Labour Party, for example how the SNP has dominated politics there since 2007.
“Of course, as I’ve stressed before, Wales is very different from Scotland.”
The Plaid Cymru politician also said his party could draw on the experiences of the SNP at the 2014 referendum.
He said: “We can look, we can learn lessons, how they for example took advantage of the surge of support towards the SNP after the first failed referendum.
“We’ll be able to learn lessons from how Nicola Sturgeon has done things differently in Scotland.”
He added Scotland was in a “very different” situation from Wales, adding that “there is no clear roadmap that they’d be able to prepare for us”.
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