Starmer promises ‘durable’ settlement to unite UK in New Year speech – but doesn’t mention Wales
Keir Starmer promised a “new and durable” constitutional settlement to keep the UK united in a New Year’s speech as his party finally lead in the polls – but focused on Scotland rather than Wales.
The Labour Party leader said that he would countenance “no deal with the SNP going into an election, no deal with the SNP coming out of an election” as he laid out the party’s plan for the period before the next General Election.
He did not mention Wales by name but said that “security, prosperity and respect” were the values that “unite the whole of the United Kingdom” which was a “unique construct” of different national identities.
“It is complex and it can easily be exploited for political gain, as we have seen in Northern Ireland the government is playing fast and loose with the peace agreement as the price of getting Brexit done,” he said in a speech in front of a Union flag in Birmingham.
“And a reckless government in Westminster that does not seem to care about what happens in Scotland erodes people’s faith in our common bonds.
“But I believe in our union of nations. I believe we are better together than any of us would be apart. I believe that each nation can speak with a progressive voice.
“But we need a new and durable constitutional settlement. Which is why I am delighted that Gordon Brown’s Commission on the Future of the UK will chart a new course for our union of nations.”
Delivering his speech against the backdrop of a UK flag, he said that the Labour party was motivated by a desire to “bring the country together”.
“We do not bind a nation by emphasising what divides us,” he said. “We build a nation from the common bonds between us. Our high streets, our community centres, our places of worship, the spaces we share.
“The Labour Party is not a nationalist party. But it is a national party. Because a nation gives us a place to belong.”
Plaid Cymru Senedd Member Mabon ap Gwynfor responded to Keir Starmer’s comments about the Labour party being a “national party”.
“The Union Flag is the flag of a State made up of several nations,” he said. “Neither the UK nor GB are nations. So, which nation is Starmer referring to?”
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