Welsh Conservatives ‘considering split’ from English party
The Welsh Conservatives are considering ‘splitting’ from the UK party – according to the Telegraph newspaper.
After disappointing results at the 2021 Senedd election, the Conservative party in Wales have decided that “clear blue water” is needed between the Tories in Wales and England.
A source told the Telegraph newspaper – the Conservative party’s broadsheet of choice – that they were looking to move “into a more Welsh-focused direction”.
The aim was the “creation of a number of policies in the pipeline that will appeal more uniquely to the Welsh electorate, whilst maintaining a strong Unionist position”.
“There will be clear blue water between both sides,” the source said, in a reference to Rhodri Morgan’s ‘clear red water’ speech – co-written by current First Minister Mark Drakeford, which declared Welsh Labour’s semi-detached status from the UK party.
“We will rebrand the Welsh Conservatives and run different policies to the ones Westminster produces,” the Conservative source continued.
“Welsh Conservatives want Welsh-focused answers to Welsh issues that arise in the devolved competencies.
“The mood is very much of abandonment by Boris. Senedd members were not even invited to Number 10 after the election.”
Not all Welsh Conservatives were said to be onboard, however, with the Senedd Member for Brecon and Radnorshire, James Evans, among those who opposed the plan.
The Welsh Conservatives made a starting bid for a semi-detached status to the UK party before this year’s conference, saying that Wales should get its share of money from HS2 to invest in Wales’ rail infrastructure.
The UK Government has classed HS2 as an ‘England and Wales’ project meaning that Wales will not benefit in the same way as Scotland and Northern Ireland from additional rail funding as a result of the project.
Speaking at the start of the Welsh Conservative conference, however, Andrew RT Davies said that additional funding should now come to Wales.
“We’re making the case that Wales should receive its fair share of HS2 spending,” he said in his speech.
Andrew RT Davies however declined to comment to the Telegraph on whether they would seek a split from the UK party.
“We’re proud to work with our colleagues in Westminster in delivering solutions to the cost of living crisis and assisting Ukraine,” he said.
“Over the coming years, we will continue to make the case for a Welsh Conservative government with conservative values that reflect the values of the people of Wales and create a strong Wales in a strong UK.”
Support our Nation today
For the price of a cup of coffee a month you can help us create an independent, not-for-profit, national news service for the people of Wales, by the people of Wales.