Unionists want to ‘strengthen the Union’ because they know support is ‘waning’, say Plaid Cymru
Westminster chose “strengthening the Union” as a debate topic because they know support for it is waning, according to Plaid Cymru MP Hywel Williams.
During a meeting of the Welsh Grand Committee – the first since 2018 – Welsh MPs debated a motion, ‘To consider the matter of Strengthening the Union as it relates to Wales’.
Williams said that it was “no wonder” that ‘strengthening the Union’ was chosen as a matter for debate, as unionist parties know that “support for independence is growing and getting younger, while unionism is shrinking and ageing.”
Winding up the debate on behalf of Plaid Cymru, Hywel Williams MP said: “We’ve heard arguments today that the Mother Union provides generously, providing unique benefits to our small country which we could never otherwise earn, invent or afford.
“And on the other hand we’ve heard that without the Union, Wales would be in dire straits – as the Member for Clwyd West mentioned – overwhelmed by debt, without an adequate health service, without decent education.
“It is no wonder then that some young people – just some – think in the same transactional terms about the Union, and to perhaps paraphrase John F. Kennedy think in terms of: Ask not what I can do the union, but ask what the union can do for me.
He added: “Thankfully, many other young people have more vision and hope for future of our nation. Whether transactional or hopeful, there is a clear trend. Support for the Union is much higher among older people, with support falling significantly as the age bracket decreases.
“It is therefore no wonder that there is a steady growth in the cohort that is asking, ‘if the Union is so good – why are we in such a miserable state?’
“Plaid Cymru and the Green Party support independence. But also – if opinion polls are to be believed – around half of Labour supporters are also supportive, or willing to support Welsh independence, regardless of what their leaders say.
“It is no wonder then that strengthening the union was chosen as a matter of concern today. Because the truth is – support for independence is growing and getting younger, while unionism is shrinking and ageing. It is only a matter of time.”
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