Welsh Labour will use the one-member-one-vote system to elect its new leader, the same way in which Jeremy Corbyn was elected as the national leader. At a special conference in Cardiff, OMOV won 64-36 over reforming the electoral college, after months of debate over whether all party members votes should be equal. This move is expected to help Mark Drakeford in his bid to attain the leadership, and hinder Vaughan Gething.
The result ends a long running row in the Welsh Labour Party over leadership elections. The Welsh Deputy leadership election was won by Carolyn Harris despite her winning only 35% of the votes of members and less overall votes. Her opponent, Julie Morgan, won the popular vote 54 to 46.
Daniel Metcalf, Chair of the Preseli Pembrokeshire Constituency Labour Party, said
‘It was great to see OMOV adopted by the party after over a year of hard work. We had a great well spirited debate with many notable speeches making excellent cases for OMOV. We can’t wait not to get on with the leadership election and decide our next First Minister’.
The majority of CLPs backed the proposal as well as Unite but many Unions supported reforming the electoral college. Among the leadership candidates Mark Drakeford supports OMOV whilst Vaughan Gething, favours retaining the electoral college.
Analysis from James Barber- Editor
In a decisive victory for democracy within the Welsh Labour Party, the members have made it clear that they want to elect their leader in the same way that the national party elected Jeremy Corbyn. The decision means that all party members and members of unions/groups affiliated to the party will have an equal vote. After what the outgoing leader Carwyn Jones labelled as a “mature and respectful debate”, its a move that will be seen by many within the party as sensible, and can only serve to benefit the democratic process within the party.
This decisions means Mark Drakeford will be a strong favorite to become first minister. In battle between left and right in the Labour Party this is another victory for the left and may mark a change in the style of governance of the Welsh Assembly. In internal party politics it will most likely mean one more Corbyn ally on Labour’s NEC.