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Righting a Wrong

The Wales Bill has now been published. You can get all the details here and here.

Much of the Bill concerns financial powers for the National Assembly. However, the Bill also includes some details concerning elections to the National Assembly. Specifically:

  • It will “extend Assembly terms permanently from four to five years, making it less likely that Assembly elections will coincide with Westminster parliamentary elections in future.”
  • The Bill also intends to “Prohibit ‘double jobbing’, by preventing Assembly Members from also being MPs”
  • Third, the Bill includes a provision to “Remove the prohibition on candidates in Assembly elections standing in a constituency and on the regional list.”

As Blog readers may recall, this latter provision was something about which I gave evidence to the Welsh Affairs Select Committee on the draft Bill earlier this year.

I am delighted that the UK government have retained their original proposal to remove the ban on dual candidacy. As I argued previously, this ban was internationally highly anomalous; was based on no sound arguments or evidence whatsoever; and gave every impression of being deeply partisan. Frankly, it shamed Wales. Removing the ban will put right a wrong.

Elections in Wales just got a little bit better.

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