Silk sequel gets a considered response at Westminster

So now we have it: Silk II, the sequel. You can read the details here and see what my colleagues in Cardiff Bay make of it here.

So what happens next? Ultimately, it is is for Westminster to decide whether or not to give away the powers Silk says should be transferred to Cardiff Bay.

Politicians of the two largest parties here are playing a cautious game - although they might prefer the term "considered".

Welsh Secretary David Jones set the ball rolling (slowly) in giving his reaction to today's report. In a written statement to MPs, he said: "There is now a little over twelve months remaining of this Parliament. This is insufficient time for the government to implement any changes that would require primary legislation, given the degree of consideration that the Silk commission's recommendations demand."

Mr Jones, who has previously suggested there is no need for radical change to the devolution settlement, added: "These will therefore be matters for the next government and Parliament, and it will be for political parties to set out their proposals and intentions to the electorate."

His Labour shadow, Owen Smith, was equally considered: "In its 226 pages, Silk makes more than 60 detailed recommendations on transport, natural resources, energy, policing and broadcasting. We will consider these carefully, and in the context of the wider constitutional settlement across the whole of the UK."

Mr Jones told my colleague James Williams: "There's going to have to be a considerable level of consideration across government but actually the commission itself acknowledges that these are recommendations that will have to be given careful consideration not only by individual government departments across Whitehall but also of course by the individual political parties and what we expect is that the Silk recommendations will inform the debates within the individual political parties when they draw up their manifestos for the next general election."

It's striking how the last two quotes are almost interchangeable; either could have been said by either politician.

On the backbenches, some MPs are more outspoken. Tory Glyn Davies, a former member of the Welsh assembly, took to Facebook last night to deliver his verdict: "Welsh media getting in a frenzy over Silk commission recommendation to devolve policing to Welsh government being announced tomorrow.

"Personally, never had anything against devolving policing if we can be certain policing is not weakened - but my view is no significant income tax devolution to create financial accountability equals no more devolved powers. So the excitement all looks a bit pointless. Welsh Labour fear of being accountable bringing devolution process to a halt.

Welsh First Minister Carwyn Jones, in London today hosting a St David's Day reception, was more enthusiastic about the latest Silk report. He was also optimistic that the next (UK) Labour manifesto would offer "fair funding" (more cash for Wales) and agree to implement the report's recommendations.

It's fair to say not every Labour MP here at Westminster shares that view. Any link to a suggestion that the cost of more AMs could be more than outweighed by cutting the number of MPs is purely coincidental.