Thursday, February 07, 2008

Damp Squib

I was going to have an early night - but stayed up to watch Dragon's Eye because the Beeb had been advertising an item about who follows Rhodri Morgan as Leader of the Wales Labour Party, and First Minister of the National Assembly. This is a matter of great interest to anyone involved in Welsh politics. So I tuned in for all the latest twists and turns in what is bound to be an bloody and vicious contest. Preamble for the revelations to come was an interview with Rhodri confirming that he is standing down next year.

Then it was on to the excitement and juicy news, which makes Dragon's Eye such compulsive viewing. Anticipation reaching fever pitch when Adrian told us he was going to interview all the runners and riders. First up, Leighton Andrews - who ran for cover without a word and a face like thunder. Next up, Carwyn Jones who smiled engagingly and said he had nothing to say. Then Edwina Hart had even less to say than Carwyn. Jane Davidson said for the umpteenth time that she's not interested. And Andrew Davies and Huw Lewis were not available to say anything. No reference at all to today's speculation about Eluned Morgan, MEP, which might have introduced a spark of interest. I'm going to bed asking myself what the devil the item was all about. I'll ring Edna Mopbucket tomorrow to find out whats happening. Or perhaps Miss wagstaffe's new informant can spill the beans.


Sunbed man said...

Dragon's Eye has really lacked any bite since Owen Smith left. You have this feeling each week that they are struggling to find anything to fill the half hour slot. There are the stories out there but they don't seem to be reaching the producers of the programme. Who will succeed Rhodri is a non story at this stage of the game. Even the Eluned Morgan angle doesn't make sense. She would have to be an Assembly member for a start. Labour has only 2 regional AMs and I can't see either of those standing down. A by electionn a first past the post seat in the present climate is likely to lead to possible disaster.Sadly we are stuck with the present Labour AMs and anyone interested in the future of Wales should really worry about that.

Miss Wagstaff said...

Not a word from me, but it doesn't take much thought to realise that Leighton is a stroppy so and so ;)

Rhymney Rocks said...

Agree Glyn, nothing much to get excited about in that piece. Unlike the closing interview with IWJ - now that was funny. What is wrong with him? He completely loses the plot at the slightest provocation, did he ever really work as a solicitor?

Anonymous said...

Bloody boring - should have watched Question Time. That's real politics.

Glyn Davies said...

sunbed man - but it is the best we have on Welsh tv. I could see the logistical problem wth Eluned Morgan - but it would have introduced a talking point. The reason I posted on it was that I rarely see a piece which has absolutely nothing at all in it. The piece with IWJ was much more interesting and raises some important points.

Miss Wagstaff - I always find Leighton quite jovial 'in the flesh' so to speak. He would be well advised not to look so grumpy when he's being doorstepped. It will only encourage them.

rhymney rocks - IWJ does seem easily rattled. Perhaps thats why he didn't feel up to taking on the First Minister role last May.

anon - I just don't like Question Time. There is one panellist too many and too often they bring on unacceptable guests like Galloway. It encourages the 'celebrity' culture that is debasing our politics. Much prefer the radio. Today, Good Evening Wales, Good Morning Wales and Call to Order are my favorites. The debate is much better. On TV, the only programme I regularly watch is Newsnight - and even that resorts to childish graphics sometimes.

Anonymous said...

Agree Dragon Eye is lacking since David Williams went as well,
ITV Wales Sharp End actually had the more important story from a Welsh perspective of all last night, the fact that the new lot of Objective One in choas yet again.

Someone should go back and check out the problems at the start of Objective One back in 1999 because shock horror they are exactly the same, why oh why do we put up with this kind of rubbish from our politicians.

Henry Richard said...

Rhodri has now declared that he will step down on his 70th birthday in Septemaber 2009. Looks like a Labour leadership election in July 2009. Time to start booking the annual holiday my thinks. On another topic. I see that Lembit has now tried the tactic of getting MPs to dress up in drag so that he isn't the only plonker in any press photograph. Where do we happen to get these people from? Gladstone must be spinning in his grave

Southpaw Grammar said...

You heard it here first, but Eluned morgan i think will stand in Cardiff West as an AM when Rhodri Steps down.

Glyn Davies said...

anon - Government wastes money by the bucketful, whatever it does - which is why it is always a good idea to search for ways of involving the private sector to deliver solutions, with the pubic sector operating as regulator. And management of Objective One funds is no exception. And the second round will be the same. Dylan Jones-Evans is always a good read on this subject.

Henry richard - Unless a General Election is called next year - and there is a fair chance of that in my opinion. He's left himself a window.

I share your distaste for some of these publicity stunts. Trouble is that we are all now expected to be willing to make an a*** of ourselves. I suppose we get what we vote for

anon - This story has been running for quite a while. Don't think you can claim it as an exclusive.

Anonymous said...

What difference is it going to make if any of the present AMs take over?
Carwen-a big yawn and very self possessed
Edwina - no way she is too grumpy with anyone who disagrees with her and hates the media
Leighton, he should have stayed as a Liberal or a PR man.
Andrew Davies- well he wants the job, we would all die of boredom in a week with him
Watch out for Huw Lewis - he fancies his chances and a lot of MPs like his attitude to Plaid.
Eluned, she may well prefer to come home if she has a chance at leadership, and to be honest I think she would make a better job of it than the rest of the bunch.
Not a wide choice is it

Anonymous said...

Dragons Eye my only hope there is Cieron can replace Rhun or may be we could get David Cornock down
Its ;ost its bite since David Williams has gone

Glyn Davies said...

VM - It could make quite a lot of difference. There is avery big difference in approach between Carwyn Jones and Huw Lewis, in my opinion. It'll probably boil down to Carwyn versus 'not Carwyn' - which could wel be Leaghton Andrews. I don't see how Eluned Morgan can come into the frame to be the next leader. Next but one perhaps.

I share your instinctive warmth towards a fellow (ex) blogger and Ciaran is full of promise - but he's still on baby milk yet. Lets see how he develops.

Walter Padley said...

Carwyn will be a disaster. To use an America politcal phrase he is a flip flopper on most issues.He has flattered to deceive in an Assembly which lacks any real talent with one or two possible exceptions. Labour is still paying the price for some of its odd candidate selections in 1999. Quality candidates were kept out by individuals who have contributed absolutely nothing to Welsh politics over the past 9 years.Carwyn's othher problem is that he represents a classic marginal seat which has more in common with many English constituencies than Wales.If Labour is unpopular in 2011 carwyn has real problems. the worst case scenario for him is a narrow Labour win in any UK general election in the autumn of 2009 or the spring of 2010 leaving many angry at the failure to defeat labour at Westmoinster.If the Conservatives can get a good candidate he is toast. His problem is that on a low turnout he could face the same set of circumstances that led to the election of Peter Hubbard Miles in 1983 to parliament. Tory vote holds solid and Labour loses votes to the third party in the form of the liberal Democrats. Carwyn has not got much of a personal vote and is consider to have been a lazy constituency MP. It would have been interesting last year to see what would have happened if Alun Cairns had stood instead of a fairly ineffectual Tory candidate who still did quite well despite a low profile

Glyn Davies said...

walter - fair point about Alun Cairns, who is a top rate politician who might have run Carwyn Jones close. Don't underestimate Emma Gereenhow, our candidate. she was very young, but I think she will become one of or stars in the future. She's short-listed to be top of our European Election list.

Anonymous said...

I agree with Walter Padley that Carwyn is a 'flip flopper' to steal the phrase. I don't think he's got what it takes to stand up for what's important. I think Valleys Mam is right - Huw Lewis has shown that he stands up for what he believes in, and I think as the 'One Wales' government continues, more and more AMs will come on side.
This Eluned Morgan stuff is nonesense - how is she supposed to become leader without being an AM, even if she takes over Cardiff West, what are they going to do? Sit around and wait for her bi-election before the leadership election? I think not.

James Davies said...

My money is on a battle between Carwyn and Huw Lewis. I dont think Leighton will make it very far. As dragons eye showed, hes dull and stroppy. Who wants those qualities in a leader.

Glyn Davies said...

anon - I agree that the Coalition will find things more difficult as time goes on - and Huw may benefit as just about the most sceptical (even if he was miffed to lose his Deputy Minister role). As far as the Eluned Morgan issue is concerned, I agree - but remember what Labour did to get Alun Michael in. Where there's a will, there's a way.

James - I think Leighton will learn from that and will not taboo the camara again in quite the same way.

frequently right said...

Leighton, Carwyn and Andrew Davies all seem much of a muchness – nothing revolutionary or particularly new to say and I think they’ll soon blur together into a pretty non descript race for leader. I’m hoping that Huw Lewis will stand and make the race more interesting. He could really open things up, and if nothing else make the leadership election a lot better quality and introduce some new ideas into Welsh Labour politics.