"Just get on the Megabus, Katherine"
Was meant to post this about a week ago; forgive Keir's tardiness.
Keir, along with other alert Welsh folk, anticipated the Conservative Government leaving Wales behind as the axe was wielded across the UK.
And last week we were given further evidence to support that.
Friend of the blog Huw Irranca-Davies MP took yet another concern of the Welsh people to Westminster, asking for clarification from the Government to quash rumours that the planned rail electrification between London and South Wales was going to be halted before it even reached the toll booths of Pont Hafren. The electrification of the rail line would provide jobs and a faster, greener, more reliable service at no extra cost to fare-payers. A Labour initiative from last year, it would keep Wales in line with the rest of the country in terms of infrastructure development. Yet now, as ever, the Conservatives seem to want to leave Wales behind.
And this would not merely be a short delay; according to one expert, if it doesn't happen now, it won't happen for a very long time. But then, he is using big theories like "economies of scale" that we can't expect our novice Chancellor to understand. In the same article, we are warned that failure to expand the electrification to Swansea as planned would be an economic "disaster" for South Wales.
Keir can't help but wonder whether it may help to have a Welsh voice on the Cabinet Committee for, hmmm I dunno, Economic Affairs?
Anyway, Keir would like to echo the words of the Ogmore MP:
"I would urge the Secretary of State for Wales, Cheryl Gillan, to stand up for Wales and ensure that we are not left behind."
Maybe we can also call on the Government patsies to help the cause? LibDem Norman Baker wanted to take electrification even further than South Wales when he spoke on the issue last year, declaring, "The Liberal Democrats want virtually the entire network electrified by 2040."
A LibDem promise. Fear the worst.