Support our Nation today - please donate here
News

Welsh Secretary David Davies peers into ‘crystal ball’ and says Commission will call for more powers for the Senedd

14 Jan 2024 4 minute read
David TV Davies and his mystical crystal ball.

Martin Shipton

Welsh Secretary David TC Davies has mocked the Independent Commission on the Constitutional Future of Wales by making predictions about what it will say after peering into a crystal ball.

The commission, chaired by Professor Laura McAllister and Dr Rowan Williams, the former Archbishop of Canterbury, will be publishing its report on the future of Welsh devolution on January 18.

Mr Davies, who opposes granting any new powers to the Senedd, was happy to be pictured with his personal crystal ball – which in fact is plastic, because he couldn’t find one made of crystal.

Predictions

He said: “I very rarely make predictions, but what the ball has told me is that when the report comes out, there will be calls for extra powers for the Senedd. They will call for powers for policing, for justice, for broadcasting. They’ll probably stop short of prisons. They’ll basically say that unless we get all these extra powers, there will be a strong drive towards separatism and then independence for Wales. So give us all these powers and then we’ll head that one off.

“They’ll also complain that the UK Government has been thoroughly rude and hasn’t treated this Commission with the respect that it deserves, despite the fact that actually I as a Minister gave evidence to it. This was a Commission that was set up to look at reserved matters which have nothing to do with the Senedd. If I had decided to set up a Commission to look at whether or not we should take powers back over the health service because of appalling waiting lists or education because Wales has the lowest standards in the UK, the idea that Mark Drakeford or any other Minister would have turned up at a time and place of my choosing to give evidence is absolutely ludicrous.”

Asked what his position was on all the powers he claimed the Commission might recommend, Mr Davies said: “My position is that the Senedd has got more than enough powers as it is. It’s a distraction for the Senedd to be getting extra powers for itself. It’s already got powers to deal with the health service, with education, with transport and with river pollution. It has money to do that with 20% more per head to spend on these matters than is spent in England. Yet it’s manifestly failing. They need to address the reasons for the failures before asking for further powers to do better.”

Constitutional change

Mr Davies said there were people in Wales who put their faith in constitutional change as a substitute for improving things as they are, He added: “And there are some people who because they fail to resolve problems and get to grips with them are talking themselves into believing, ‘if only we had these extra powers, it would all be fine.’

“I can make one more prediction about that report. At no point will it say that the Senedd has done a great job on the health service, a better job on education and because of the demonstrable improvements and the fact that we have a better health service and better education in Wales, it follows suit that we should have extra powers. Of course, that would be a powerful argument in favour, but my prediction is that they won’t even try to make that one because anyone who looks at the figures impartially will have to acknowledge that the situation in Wales is worse than it is in England.”

Mr Davies said he wasn’t wholly against constitutional reform, and had voted for House of Lords reform in the early years of the Cameron government. He said: “It was leading towards half of the House of Lords being voted for and the other half being appointed. It went by the wayside.

“The problem is that Labour, who say they want House of Lords reform, could see that they could vote it down and beat the government. They took the political opportunity to vote id down anyway, just to enjoy the embarrassment of the government defeat.

“I think it is very hard to defend aspects of the way the House of Lords is, so maybe the question should be directed at some of the people in the Labour Party at the time who voted something down not because they disagreed with it, but because they thought it would be fun to inflict a defeat on the government.”


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.

Subscribe
Notify of
guest
16 Comments
Oldest
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Steve Duggan
Steve Duggan
1 month ago

….. I see my crystal ball now … . Mr Davies losing his seat this year ….

Llyn
Llyn
1 month ago
Reply to  Steve Duggan

Not a supporter, but I think he will hang on. Labour will have to do very well to beat him.

Jeff
Jeff
1 month ago
Reply to  Llyn

Larger majorities have been overturned in recent by-elections.

One can hope.

Rob
Rob
1 month ago
Reply to  Llyn

According to Electoral Calculus there is a 57% chance Labour will take it. Furthermore Reform UK will eat into the right wing vote.

I wonder what all those anti-devolution Tory MP’s will do once they lose their seats? Stand in the Senedd in 2026?

Jeff
Jeff
1 month ago
Reply to  Rob

Be wary of reform being useful, Sunak could veer even further right to try to stave off their influence. Imagine Braverman on steroids just to keep votes.

Cwm Rhondda
Cwm Rhondda
1 month ago

Twpsyn

Mark
Mark
1 month ago

Sounds to me he’s running scared and rightly so . Your getting desperate keep clutching at straws ,not long now before your gone .

Annibendod
Annibendod
1 month ago

Says the man whose party has never, not once in the history of democracy, won a democratic mandate to govern Wales. Shove it TC. You’re a disgrace. Your position a democratic outrage. The sooner we consign the UK to the dustbin of history, the better.

Gareth
Gareth
1 month ago

Dai TC gave the plastic ball to me after he had used it, it said a Tory would open his mouth and a lie would come out, not a single Tory or gov official will accept blame for the post office scandal, not one of them will return a single penny from the billions they stole during the covid crisis, and they will continue to stuff the house of lords with Tory cronies.

Rob
Rob
1 month ago

As long as Wales has weaker powers than both Scotland and Northern Ireland then the demand is always going to to be there!! Is he suggesting that we are a second class nation and that we should be okay with that? If you want the Union to survive then get rid of the asymmetrical nature of devolution and establish a federal United Kingdom.

Last edited 1 month ago by Rob
Marc
Marc
1 month ago

Is there no beginning to this man!s wit?

Nobby Tart
Nobby Tart
1 month ago

“Welsh Secretary David TC Davies has mocked the Independent Commission on the Constitutional Future of Wales..”

So, as the Secretary of State for Wales, he’s clearly on Wales’ side then.
I’m so glad he’s there, fighting our corner every time.
I feel we’re in such good hands.

Rhosddu
Rhosddu
1 month ago

The voice of an angry, uptight, blimpish unionist. His contempt for this country is made clear in his little speech. The irony is that everything he says about the Senedd applies equally to the Westminster Assembly.

Jeff
Jeff
1 month ago

Listen to what he says, because this is the party line from HQ, listening doesn’t mean you agree, it means we know the direction No10 would like the Welsh cons to go. Mr Davies is there to parrot party lines.

Mr Williams
Mr Williams
1 month ago

It would be very interesting to read what future Welsh historians, writing about our times, will write about our journey towards autonomy, and how they will judge those, like David TC Davies, who opposed it. I doubt they will be empathetic to them.

Richard E
Richard E
1 month ago

I look forward to Lord Davies of Monmouths mainden speach in the Lords when the good pro EU voters of his patch dispach him next Autumn.

Our Supporters

All information provided to Nation.Cymru will be handled sensitively and within the boundaries of the Data Protection Act 2018.