Wednesday, 23 May 2018

It is not enough to be anti-Labour

Andrew RT Davies, in the wake of the Welsh Conservatives spring conference, has iterated his belief in a Plaid-Conservative pact to oust Labour from Cardiff Bay. In purely policy terms, this is bizarre. How would a socialist, EU-friendly, party agree on a positive agenda with a market-driven, isolationist outfit? The Welsh Conservatives 2016 manifesto was rather airy-fairy according to this BBC analysis, but there was enough to suggest that they would have by-passed local authorities in education and introduced competition into the NHS in Wales, surely anathema to Plaid.

The two parties would have no positive message to put forward but instead rely on public resentment against a Labour government which has been in power too long. Short of a massive sex or corruption scandal, I cannot see traditional voting patterns being upset to the extent that an "anyone but Labour" platform would succeed.  There will be a stronger pair of negative slogans threatening the two parties: "Vote Plaid, get a Tory government" and "Vote Conservative, get a nationalist".

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