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Bye Bye Jane

Betsan Powys | 12:09 UK time, Saturday, 11 October 2008

A quick bit of news.

Jane Davidson, thought of at one time as a possible Labour leadership candidate, has told her party in Pontypridd that she's standing down at the next Assembly election. She made it clear last year that she wouldn't be going for the leadership but told a meeting last night that she won't fight the seat in 2011.

I doubt whether she's trying to steal Mike German's thunder as he gives his farewell speech today in Clydach but all the same, it's intriguing news and means she might yet leave her mark on the leadership election.

Heading off West but hoping to hear more from her on tomorrow's Politics Show if we can track her down and if she can make it.


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  • 1. At 12:39pm on 11 Oct 2008, John Henry wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 2. At 2:10pm on 11 Oct 2008, brynt41 wrote:


    Another link too many, The Stoneman?

    Re topic:

    Another rat jumping off a sinking Labour ship, (no doubt 'to spend more time with her family') when it goes down in 2011?

    (This topic is out of date order in the list on the right)

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  • 3. At 4:03pm on 11 Oct 2008, John Henry wrote:

    Brynt41, I used the Welsh for "Parliament".

    My posting that was removed .......

    'It read .....

    Jane has probably had enough "****** Babel" for two lifetimes.

    It should have read ......

    Jane has probably had enough "Welsh Parliament Babel" for two lifetimes.

    I think you might be right, things are happening, its as if they know something secret.

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  • 4. At 4:30pm on 11 Oct 2008, Colin Cheesman wrote:

    A great shame irregardless of your political views. Having met and listebed to Jane Davidson she always struck me as an intelligent and caring politician. I hope she can use her obvious talents in whatever she turns her hand to after the next election. And no I am not a labour supporter or even a labour voter - some peoples talents just shine through all that.

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  • 5. At 4:58pm on 11 Oct 2008, Hogygog wrote:

    One of the most enthusiastic education ministers we've known . Shame about her reluctance to expand Welsh-medium education. It will be a genuine loss to the assembly, though.

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  • 6. At 10:49pm on 11 Oct 2008, Lyn David Thomas wrote:

    Met her a few times, seemed a capable enough person... certainly head and shoulders above some other AMs

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  • 7. At 1:07pm on 12 Oct 2008, Crossroads wrote:

    "I feel as though I have lost a friend"

    (Sound of tears falling on laminate flooring)

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  • 8. At 3:26pm on 12 Oct 2008, Negrin wrote:

    I feel the departure of Jane Davidson will be a great loss to Wales and the Assembly Government.

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  • 9. At 09:24am on 13 Oct 2008, Snoutsintrough wrote:

    I suppose with councils investing in "absolutely secure banks",the economy going into recession the decision of Jane Davision is a great loss to Wales. Surely amongst the vast ranks of membership of the Labour Party there are people willing to undertake the onerous and time consuming duties of being an AM. The terms and conditions will seem very attractive in light of the (non public sector) job market in coming years. How on earth did Wales manage before the inception of WAG in that a)council houses were built,the NHS was funded and people saw their Doctor,roads were built,our rubish was collected et al. The importance of these AM's has been recognised by BBC Wales in that the numbers of people employed by them on "politics" is almost at the level of the cast of Ben Hur.

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  • 10. At 11:57am on 13 Oct 2008, Negrin wrote:

    Heard that Jane Davidson has decided to give up before Edwina Hart takes over the leadership and sacks her. Should be the other way around.

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  • 11. At 4:45pm on 13 Oct 2008, daverodway wrote:

    Might snoutsintrough tell us, please, what was so much better abotu Wales pre-1999. I remember a country I loved that had been hammered by Thatcherism and was bogged down in Labour's cronyism and corruption. I remember Britain's highest unemployment, decimated communities, ill-health on a terrific scale, and oh yes! John redwood.
    I remember no nationals self-confidence, and so little power to make our own decisions that we were given Welsh secretaries with westminster constituencies in Croydon!
    I remember seeing a graffiti on the walls of a disused factory that my father had worked in and where people were made redundant without training, prospects or help, which said: Where are the benefits of London rule?
    I had asked myself the very same thing.
    I might add, too, that one of the things that has reinforced my faith in our need for our own law-making powers has been the nastiness, the deceit, and the general ill-informedness of the 'No' brigade.

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  • 12. At 5:02pm on 13 Oct 2008, dennisjunior1 wrote:

    It is a sad day for Wales regarding the leaving from office of Jane Davidson!

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  • 13. At 09:58am on 14 Oct 2008, Crossroads wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 14. At 5:14pm on 14 Oct 2008, Crossroads wrote:

    In the words of the late Kenneth Williams, "Infamy, infamy, they've all got it in for me!!!!

    This could well be the cry from "daverodway". This mild, inoffensive poster finds his comments referred to the moderators.
    O.K. so our Dave meandered somewhat from the topic, but there was absolutely nothing offensive in his post. I should imagine he is beside himself with shame after the moderator's action.

    Whereas my reply to our Dave was a tad risque, with plenty of *******asterisks being used. I really do believe that Dave (bless 'im) deserves better than this.

    I on the other hand thoroughly deserve my punishment,and would have no complaints whatsoever if Dave's offering was returned to the forum.

    The moderators action reeks of a"Take 'em both off" attitude, which His Royal Highness Lord Reith would undoubtedly have frowned upon from a great height.

    Please Betsan, use your influence here. Put it down to my distress at the delightful (but unfortunately MRS.) Jane Davidson's departure. For in the words of the late Wilson Picket.."How many heartaches can a man take in one night"? (And this from an Eric Clapton fan)

    Please can you reinstate Daverodway's inoffensive offering without delay.

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  • 15. At 10:35am on 15 Oct 2008, brynt41 wrote:

    #9 Snoutsintrough wrote:

    "How on earth did Wales manage before the inception of WAG in that a)council houses were built,the NHS was funded and people saw their Doctor,roads were built,our rubish was collected et al."

    Oh come on! The WAG can't be blamed for any of the above. It was the Tories who sold off the council houses. They aren't being built anywhere in the UK. People in England don't get to see their gp's sooner either, and my rubbish collection hasn't got worse. Wales has had abysmal levels of investment in transport infrastructure since the year dot. Westminster won't provide the funds to the Assembly for investment in roads and railways.

    I'm not defending the Assembly or its Government. We have significantly longer waiting lists that in England.. but levels of health are worse here, ie more sick people, needing more care. This is because of higher unemployment and levels of poverty, resulting from decades of neglect by central government, Tory, Labour and New Labour tories.

    The WAG's powers are pathetically weak. Its the weakest devolved government in any European country. Apart from very limited abilities to legislate using the LCOs, it can only pass secondary legislation.. many local authorities can do that.

    No other people in Europe have been willing to accept such inadequate devolution. We've been conditioned in Wales, to believe that we're unable to take responsibility for our own affairs. Its time we matured and refused to be treated like children.

    Mandelson was inducted into the Lords earlier this week, post haste. He now sits in an entirely unelected chamber which has the power to veto any request the WAG makes for legislative competence. Plaid's three nominees have been waiting over a year to become members, and then only to be able to discuss issues relating to LCOs
    The way we are treated in contemptible.

    I don't hear any complaints from the Plaid leadership either. I fear its because IWJ doesn't want to rock the coalition boat, as he realises that he has blundered. His decision to support Labour was based on the agreement that they would support a 'Yes' vote in the referendum. He must now know that they will not so do. He was naive to ever think they would. He will nevertheless claim that Plaid has helped provide 'stable government'. That doesn't really cut the ice. Wales needs better government, not stable-handicapped government. Salmond had more sense, either be the senior partner in government, or go it alone.

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  • 16. At 3:08pm on 15 Oct 2008, Snoutsintrough wrote:

    brynt41. Nobody is suggesting that the world has come to an end since inception of WAG. Since the opening of floodgates of aggregate public spending in 2000 apparently the budget in real money for Wales from HM Treasury in London has "DOUBLED and add on the European money and also prison refurbishment programme etc and "weve never had it so good". The issue surely is whether all this money has been spent wisely and on real and factual investment which is to produce an economic return,or merely blow up levels of employment directly in the public sector and areas that receive their funding from WAG and are virtually civil servants. The NHS in Wales has received huge additional sums of money in last ten years but what I understand is that the productivity or in what is in Reagonomics"getting a bigger bang for your buck " has gone down. The growth in private health in Wales has continued apace which reflects the increased properity in certain sectors of welsh life but nobody wants to "quantify" it because it will show the NHS to poor light. The sale of council houses and housing association properties was contained in 1980 Act and were sold to "sitting tenants" at a discount and what could be wrong with that. NL did not seek to end the policy as many working class people were delighted with policy and held to "buttress" the Thatcher legend. As I understand the receipts from sales were used to fund development of properties by Housing Associations and it would be interesting to know exact figures of provision of "social housing" over 25 years. The people who "sold" devolution did so on the basis that things were "terrible" in Wales and this new body would solve all our problems . Well the money has been provided and without a doubt has been honestly spent to make things better,however the question is does what weve got have the expertise/business sense to make the step change to change things dramatically. In my humble opinion the answer is No and apparently about a third of people of an age to have worked for 40 years plus agree that it should be abolished or radically changed. The summit to be held on the economic crisis is yet again a public "con" job as the fundamentals of the crisis are "world wide"
    and counties like USA are struggling to come to terms with it so how on earth are our "politicos" going to make any fundamental impact.They will appear on BBC Wales and look earnest and say things are bad but were doing our best but in reality it means nothing.

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  • 17. At 8:58pm on 16 Oct 2008, Lyn David Thomas wrote:

    Actually housing association property was not sold to tenants, only council property. I have seen someone make this mistake before.

    Also you are wrong about receipts from sales of council houses, they were used to pay off debt and were forbidden initially to be used in any capital development projects.

    As for we can't do anything about the economic crisis well rubbish, thing global act local. And this is what has been done. I think if the Welsh Government had done nothing then they would be rightly criticised. There is a limit to what they could do but clearly the CBI and the TUC saw that this was an important meeting and attended and contributed. The result is a piece of the jigsaw, and it will help. To do nothing would have been irresponsible in the extreme.

    No one said devolution would solve all our problems but it does help produce uniquely Welsh solutions to problems, and within its limited scope it has done a lot of good. The Welsh Bac is an excellent qualification, the abolition of prescription charges an excellent and long overdue return to the principles that the NHS was founded on. The abolition of burdensome and unnecessary tests in school has been a relief to teachers and eased their lot considerably, the abandonment of the purchaser/provider split which has so damaged the NHS in England, creating duplication and conflict in its wake, an end to PFI - and the financial burdens that it creates... etc, some of the many things done by the National Assembly.

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  • 18. At 10:14pm on 16 Oct 2008, Snoutsintrough wrote:

    With regard to 17 Lyn Thomas.Sorry to be a pedant with regard to HA's.There were two main types of Housing Associations. 1 The Chariteable ones were exempt from the provisions of RTB as in Housing Act 1980. The other type were non-chariteable and properties could be sold under the HA 1980 except if the properties were a)sheltered units with wardens for elderly or b)designated for disabled people.In the late80's/early90's the whole funding of HA's changed to asplit between a)publicmoney and b)money from banks and building societies. To satisfy Banks etc these properties in total were excluded from RTB. It might have changed but I am right on this.

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  • 19. At 3:22pm on 20 Oct 2008, Lyn David Thomas wrote:

    The vast majority of housing associations fall in to the charitable status and the non charitable were a very small proportion of the housing stock.

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  • 20. At 7:07pm on 20 Oct 2008, Snoutsintrough wrote:

    Lyn Thomas 19. Sorry to be pendant but your post 17 i.e. HA properties were not sold under rtb was incorrect as is stated in post 19.

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