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Last Updated: Saturday, 24 March 2007, 17:18 GMT
Conference season over and out
By John Stevenson
BBC Wales political correspondent

Ieuan Wyn Jones
Was the party leader trying to say something in his speech?
Saturday, 24 March

You thought it was all over ... It is now.

Four conferences done and dusted.

Plaid president, Dafydd Iwan, sent his audience home with a warning not to waste the chance they have to make an impact on 3 May .. to work hard and to knock on doors.

"I met a man last night who's on 74,000" he said.

Before you rush to Caernarfon hoping for a pay rise he was talking leaflets, not pounds.

This is a party in buoyant mood, a party that genuinely believes it can win up to 16/17 seats come 3 May.

And if you believe Helen Mary Jones, it's a party that would "talk to Attila Hun if that was good for Wales".

No-one told me he was standing.

Let's talk

An opportunity to press Adam Price a bit harder on what he meant when he told the conference that after 3 May Plaid "will talk to anyone and everyone who wants to make a difference".

Yes, he did mean the Conservatives along with everyone else and he's not afraid to say it.

And he doesn't care if Labour says it too.

It's grown-up politics to accept that in future, it'll be tough for any one party to win a majority in Cardiff Bay so yes, listening to talking to other parties, consensual politics, is the way forward.

Getting into government at any cost after over 80 years in opposition? Not at all says the party's campaign director. What's important is making sure your policies are put into practice ... not getting your hands on ministerial cars. Got it?

He also throws in a reminder that full-blooded coalition isn't the only way forward if no party gets a majority; that there's a vast array of options facing every party - statements of agreements on specific issues for instance?

Talking of agreements and contracts - the word on the ground was that Rhodri Morgan's signature on the giant contract Labour waved at Plaid was a fake!

Labour fight back: not true! The contract was signed on Wednesday night before being transported all the way up to Caernarfon.

Not High Noon

It wasn't High Noon exactly.

It was just after one and it's not clear whether the cowboys ambushed the Indians - or the other way round - but Labour came with their contract and left with it unsigned.

They even let Adam Price, Plaid's campaign director, borrow their pen but he wasn't up for it.

He is the man who is about to tell his party that after May's election - when Plaid are in government - they 'will talk to anyone and everyone who wants to make a difference' after May's election - and that includes the Tories.

Not every one of Plaid's grassroots members out and about in Caernarfon's busy bars last night would be pleased to hear that.

Labour left having refused to sign Plaid's contract and without a glimpse of Ieuan Wyn Jones who was kept well away.

And by now they'll have realised that Adam Price has still got their pen.

Contracts at dawn

Another venue, another conference - and it's not just Plaid Cymru representatives who are flocking to Galeri in Caernarfon.

News comes that Martin Eaglestone - who'll be contesting the Arfon assembly seat for Labour - is on his way too.

He'll be arriving any minute with a contract for Plaid to sign.

It's already signed by Rhodri Morgan, the first minister and in it, he pledges not to take Labour into any kind of coalition with the Tories after 3 May's election. Will Plaid do the same?

Or will they, in turn, draw up their own contract calling on Rhodri Morgan, Tony Blair and Peter Hain to promise "no more illegal wars, no more nuclear weapons, no more hospital closures'?

He's on his way. We'll let you know.

By the way a copy of the leader's speech has arrived.

And Ieuan Wyn Jones has a problem.

Plaid, he writes (twice), have "an exiting policy agenda".

On the next page they're "offering such an exiting and innovative set of policy ideas".

Typing errors? Or is there something he's not telling us?

Wales@Westminster newslog
21 Sep 06 |  Wales politics

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