SIR – It was disappointing to read Peter Hain’s comments resurrecting his idea that the Assembly should be exclusively elected by the first-past-the-post system (“Hain pushes for first-past-the-post voting for Assembly”, September 27).
Writing for WalesOnline during the AV referendum campaign, Hain stated that “as a democrat I cannot wish away the fact that first-past-the-post is no longer fit for purpose”.
What the Shadow Secretary of State must surely recognise is that his latter day conversion to first-past-the-post would not only be bad for Welsh democracy, but ultimately bad for Labour.
Under Hain’s plan, Labour, which secured just over two out of every five votes in this year’s Assembly election, would be rewarded with over two-thirds of the seats: a thumping supermajority giving the party a significant amount of power, and reducing the size of the opposition parties to a rump at the very time when new law-making powers calls for better scrutiny.
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Labour members should look again at Hain’s proposals as it runs contrary to Carwyn Jones’ aspiration that Labour should be a party for the whole of Wales.
2011 saw some spectacular results for Labour – but outside of South Wales the party still has much work to do.
Without the current Regional List system, Labour would have no representation and a weakened campaigning base across huge swathes of the country; areas with parliamentary seats once held by Labour and which the party must win back if it is to topple the Tories in 2015.
Director, Electoral Reform Society (Wales)
Published Western Mail