“All the hallmarks of a backroom deal”- Welsh Lib Dems react to decision to keep new controversial Senedd voting system

7 Mar 2024

The Welsh Liberal Democrats have described the decision to keep the new Senedd voting system as having “all the hallmarks of a backroom deal”.

From 2026, votes will be cast for parties instead of individual candidates as part of plans to expand the Senedd.

Critics of the new voting system say that it takes power away from the voter and places it in the hands of political party bosses.

Commenting, the Leader of the Welsh Liberal Democrats Jane Dodds MS said:

This proposal to switch towards a Closed-list systems has all the hallmarks of a backroom deal, a stitch up decided behind closed doors.

We have heard time after time that Closed-list systems put power in the hands of the party, and not the people.

So why do Welsh Labour and their Plaid Cymru counterparts insist on pushing through a voting system that has been torn down by numerous experts?

The irony hasn’t been lost on me that the so-called “progressive parties” have decided to back a conservative system that holds us backwards instead of pushing us forward.

With this Bill, we have a once in a lifetime opportunity to revolutionise Welsh democracy.

But choosing to go down this path, we have turned ourselves into outliers. Disconnected from democratic norms such as voter empowerment and candidate accountability glaringly missing.”