Glamorgan Gem Column - September 2017
The Tories are Trying to Subvert Democracy
Two weeks back in Parliament is all it takes to realise that the Tories in Westminster are on the back-foot following the General Election in June.
We saw them deprived of a majority after they took the electorate for granted and last week we were presented with yet more evidence that the UK Tory Government is obsessed with clinging onto power. Last Tuesday, the Government voted through changes to parliamentary committees to give Theresa May a majority on crucial legislative committees that drive the Commons agenda. This is a direct power-grab by the Government in the wake of their embarrassing loss of seats in June.
The people didn’t vote for the Tories to have a free hand with no parliamentary scrutiny. The people voted to embolden the opposition to Theresa May’s Government. This should be reflected in committees as well as in the House of Commons.
The Democratic Unionist Party backed this move following their grubby £1 billion deal to support the Government before the summer. They should no longer be sitting on the opposition benches in the Commons and it is an outrage that they are still receiving financial support in the form of short money which is specifically intended for opposition parties.
My Welsh Labour colleagues and I are standing up for Wales on Brexit, rail electrification, the public sector pay cap, the list goes on. We will continue to fight for what is right for our communities across South Wales. The next 18 months are an incredibly important time for our nation and the Government mustn’t try to exclude Wales’ voice.
The public aren’t blind. The last election showed that the British people are growing increasingly tired of the Tories’ underhand gerrymandering of our political system. The desperation illustrated by the sticking-plaster they are attempting to create within committees will not last. The Tories are on notice.