Well, who would have thought it. The Shadow Secretary of State for Wales, Cheryl Gillan issuing a press release, taking the actual Secretary of State, Peter Hain to task for not getting on with the procedures necessary to deliver a referendum on law making powers for the National Assembly. We do know that Peter Hain is not that keen on holding a referendum. Mrs Gillan tells us that Mr Hain has written on his web site the words; "a referendum held before, or in 2011 would be lost" and that further powers for the Assembly should not be granted "today or tomorrow or even next year or even the year after that."
This is an interesting development. The Labour/Plaid Coalition Government in Cardiff Bay is committed to an early referendum (preferably in 2010) - and all AMs voted in favour of setting the process in motion last month. First thing that happened (or didn't happen) was that Carwyn Jones delayed conveying the Assembly decision to Peter Hain for as long as possible. Now it seems that Peter Hain is leaving the issue gather dust on his desk. What are they playing at? Whatever the truth of all this, it seems to me significant that Cheryl Gillan is so clearly exercised about the delay in moving things along. I imagine one or two Plaid bloggers will be choking on their Corn Flakes when they read about this in tomorrow morning's papers. They will have to at their most inventive to put a negative Tory spin on this one.