Gan Daniel Lawrence
Plaid Cymru has today launched its manifesto which has at its heart a commitment to protecting the most vulnerable in society during these difficult economic times. Pensioners and children are those who will suffer the most as a result of future spending cuts, and as a result it will be important that we fight this general election with them in mind.
As we campaign we should bear in mind that Plaid has a massive opportunity to make a real difference in setting the agenda after the election as we may (with the help of our allies the SNP) hold the balance of power in a hung parliament. It is important that as many young people get involved and help out in their local areas as possible. I'm helping out Chris Williams' campaign in Cardiff Central, and there are numerous other young energetic Cymru X members all across Wales helping out in their local constituencies.
This election is looking like it will be the most closely fought since 1992, and the electorate faces a real choice. The state of the economy will shape the arguments, but through it all we need to remember why a strong economy is so important, it is for the common health and wealth of the people of these nations, and it is not something Plaid will forget.
There hasn't been a hung parliament in the UK since 1974, and it would be a major shock for many people around the UK to wake up on May 7th to such a scenario. But we in Wales are a bit more used to the idea of a more balanced parliament. With proportional representation in the National Assembly, coalition government and the deals needed to achieve this are, and will inevitably be a common feature for the foreseeable future. Plaid Cymru have proved themselves skillful deal breakers, both within the Welsh Assembly (with the One Wales programme of government), and in UK elections. During the late 70's Plaid made, as the historian John Davies puts it “such skillful use of the Labour party's eagerness to ensure their support that the Queens speech in November 1978 was studded with concessions to them”. These concessions included the promise to pay compensation to quarrymen suffering from silicosis, and shows that Plaid could play an important role if given the people's support.
Elections are or at least should be a battle of ideas, and the party with the best ideas should win that battle. It is our job to take those ideas to the people and hopefully we can win their trust.
South Wales East Representative