‘Wales generally reflects northern England in its politics’, says Tory MP
A Tory MP has argued that “Wales generally reflects northern England in its politics”.
James Davies, who represents the Vale of Clwyd, suggested that Welsh-speaking heartlands are “exceptions” to this in an essay for Strength in Union.
The Conservative politician argued in the publication, which has been launched at the Conservative party conference, that this was “demonstrated in the EU referendum, when a majority in Wales voted for Leave”.
He also claimed that Wales has “never essentially functioned as a single, united political entity”.
He wrote: “Yes, there are exceptions in the Welsh-speaking heartlands of north-west Wales in particular, but the majority of the population of Wales generally reflects northern England in its politics.
“This was demonstrated in the EU referendum, when a majority in Wales voted for Leave, very much rejecting the nationalists’ claim that our future lies as an independent nation in the EU. That Leave vote extended just as much to the Valleys as it did to borderland areas.”
He added: “Of course, unlike Scotland, Wales has never essentially functioned as a single, united political entity. Its population is only just over three million – one third of the population of Greater London.
“Its shape, topography and lengthy border have, since the industrial revolution, led to the development of several social and economic units involving adjacent areas of England.”
He also said: “A noisy minority, fuelled by Twitter, a skewed media and academia in Wales – and often naive London-based news outlets – might suggest that Wales is itching for independence. Fortunately, that couldn’t be further from the truth.”