A WELSH Government minister has refused to say whether she believes its proposals for Senedd reform will get through a special Welsh Labour conference. 

Jane Hutt, who is the longest serving Welsh cabinet minister, was twice asked on the BBC’s Politics Wales programme if plans for an expanded Senedd and a new electoral system could pass next week’s special Welsh Labour conference. 

Party members voted to support increasing the size of the Senedd and to use a voting system "at least as proportional" as the one currently in use at Welsh Labour’s conference in March. 

In May the Welsh Labour government and Plaid Cymru announced it had agreed proposals for a 96 member Senedd with a new voting system of 16 Senedd constituencies each electing six members from closed party lists. 

There would also be an inbuilt gender parity with seats going to men and women on the candidate lists as parties win seats. The agreement was also backed by the special Senedd committee on reform whose report backed the proposals which the government and Plaid announced before the committee’s report was published. 

Though Labour members have backed the principle of reform the party still has to back it at next week’s special conference. 

Last week it was confirmed the Rhondda Constituency Labour Party had voted against the proposals and this week it was also confirmed the Llanelli CLP has also voted to reject them. 

Appearing on the Politics Wales programme Hutt, the Labour MS for the Vale of Glamorgan, was asked if the government’s proposals will get through next week’s special Labour conference. 

The social justice minister replied: “Well I was very pleased my constituency, the Vale of Glamorgan, on Thursday voted unanimously to support it and constituencies all over Wales rightly are debating this. 

“This is an historical opportunity for us, for our next generation to actually ensure we have the reform that we know will serve the people of Wales. So its important that we have that conference next week for Welsh Labour.” 

Hutt was asked again if the leadership will be able to get the reforms through the confernece when there is “a difference of opinion” within the party. 

She replied: “Well it’s good that there’s a deference of opinion. It’s good that there’s debate but the overwhelming, and two thirds in the Senedd voted for this package, and what was important on Thursday was the young people saying we believe in the Senedd, we want it to go forward. Capacity needs to serve the people of Wales and that’s what it will do.” 


Some Senedd Members, MPs and local constituency branches have been announcing whether they have agreed to support of oppose the reform proposals via their social media accounts. 

Last week Rhondda MP Chris Bryant announced his local party branch had voted to oppose the reform proposals

He wrote on Twitter: "Although we support reform in principle, the Rhondda Labour Party voted unanimously last night against the present proposals for reform of the Senedd". 

Asked for clarification, Mr Bryant said: "We object to electing six representatives in each 200,000 constituency on closed lists.” 

Welsh Labour’s deputy leader, Swansea East MP, Carolyn Harris said she is "not keen" on the plan to elect 96 Senedd members, though she does "see the need" for a larger Welsh parliament. 

The latest CLP to declare its opposition is the Llanelli branch which tweeted: “At  the monthly meeting on the 23rd June and after a lengthy. lively  debate the Llanelli CLP voted by a majority  against the Senedd  proposals. This was over concerns with the closed list systems and a desire for the party to work with Members in considering other options.” 

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