Following controversy surrounding the Internal Market Bill, David Melding has resigned from the Welsh Conservative Shadow Cabinet.
Melding resigned in an email sent on September 9, stating that he had “misgivings” about the UK Government’s approach to negotiations with the EU.
He tweeted confirmation of his resignation:
With regret but resolve I have resigned as shadow Counsel General and my other posts in the shadow cabinet. pic.twitter.com/sbQnk1bHhL
— David Melding (@DavidMeldingMS) September 9, 2020
The Shadow Cabinet Secretary for Housing, Heritage, Culture and Media since 2016, Mr Melding has been Member of the Senedd for South Wales Central since 1999.
David Melding is what many would consider a veteran of the Welsh Conservative Party, having served in numerous roles including Shadow Minister for Economic Development (2007-2008), and serving as the party’s Director of Policy during the 2003, 2007 and 2011 Welsh Parliamentary elections.
Melding has also announced he will be standing down as an MS in the next Welsh Parliamentary elections in May 2021.
In his resignation letter Mr Melding wrote:
“The publication today of the Internal Market Bill has done nothing to lessen my anxieties about the danger facing our 313 year old union. Indeed, they have been gravely aggravated by the decisions made in the last few days by the Prime Minister”.
“I believe it time to step down… as I feel it necessary to speak out against what I consider to be a lack of statecraft at this crucial time for the UK’s very survival as a multinational state”.
“I will offer you all possible support from the backbenches”.
The Internal Market Bill was proposed earlier today by the Conservative Government at Westminster.
At the end of the transition period, the bill would give the UK Government unilateral control over internal UK trade, essentially replacing overarching EU laws and handing control of some areas to Westminster.
The bill will also give Westminster the ability to spend money to replace programmes traditionally funded by the EU, providing Number 10 with spending powers in areas such as infrastructure, sport, culture and education.
Its implementation has been described by members of the Welsh Government as “an attack on democracy and an affront to the people of Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland”.
Paul Davies, leader of the Welsh Conservative Party, commented on the resignation: “I’m sorry to lose David from my Shadow Cabinet … I’m grateful that he will continue to support me from the backbenches”.twitter Follow @gairrhyddpol for all of the latest updates from the world of politics.