- Statement from the Electoral Reform Society for immediate release, Wednesday 25 March
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Government plans to reduce the number of Welsh MPs raise serious questions about Welsh representation in Westminster democracy campaigners have argued.
The proposals come despite the government’s decision to scrap a cut in numbers in the commons overall, shelving long-held plans to reduce the number of MPs from 650 to 600.
The decision to scrap proposed cuts was announced this week yet plans revealed today mean re-drawn parliamentary boundaries could still see Wales lose 10 constituencies – almost a quarter of its current number .
Commenting on the announcement Jess Blair, Director, ERS Cymru, said:
“The announcement today that numbers of Welsh MPs are still set to be cut, despite overall numbers in Westminster remaining at 650, raise serious questions around how the people of Wales are represented.
“This is the third iteration of proposed changes to the number of MPs in recent years and we need clarity on what exactly this means for Wales. Boundaries must be based on a proper set of principles such as those registered in the area and the number of people represented by an MP and not just be drawn on a whim.
“Any cut in the number of Welsh MPs puts additional pressure on the Senedd, which we already know is severely overstretched at just 60 Members. A reduction of this number, which would see Wales lose almost a quarter of its parliamentary representation provides further impetus to increase the number of Members of the Senedd.
“If the UK Government genuinely care about ensuring all votes count equally reducing Wales’ voice in Westminster is not the solution. Instead, we need a fair, modern and proportional voting system – ending the travesty of super-safe seats vs the handful of swing constituencies”.
Notes to Editors