Plaid Cymru launches campaign

By Aled Thomas

Plaid Cymru launched its general election campaign today at one of its main target seats, Ynys Mon, or, in English, Anglesey.

The island constituency was a Plaid stronghold for many years until 2001 when current MP Albert Owen won it for Labour.

But the Welsh nationalist party, which has entered into a strategic alliance with its counterparts in Scotland, is making Ynys Mon one of its main targets in its stated aim of winning seven seats.

Wales’ deputy first minister and Plaid leader Ieuan Wyn Jones said the only way to break the “Westminster bubble” is to elect “local champions”.

Mr Jones, who was himself MP for Ynys Mon until 2001, said the prospect of a hung parliament offered his party the opportunity to do well for Wales: “This is not a time for politics as usual. In this election Plaid has a real opportunity to break that Westminster bubble.

“With a more balanced parliament Plaid’s duty will be to negotiate the best deal for Wales and the best deal for our communities. Only Plaid can be depended upon to ensure greater support for our pensioners and fairer funding for the Welsh budget to protect jobs, schools and hospitals.”

Speaking at the launch event in Menai Bridge, the party’s leader in Westminster, Elfyn Llwyd said: “Plaid MPs are now synonymous with ambitious campaigns motivated by justice and fairness – whether it was the impeachment campaign against Blair or compensation for miners – there are examples of issues where Plaid has led the way.

“But we need an even stronger team in Westminster. My appeal is that people do not waste their vote on May 6th on yet another Labour, Tory or Lib Dem MP to toe their London party line. Vote for an independent-thinking Plaid MP who puts your area first.”

Last week, Plaid Cymru and the SNP launched their joint demands for their MPs support in the event of a hung parliament.

Plaid holds three seats and has a target of winning another four.