The mantle of First Minister of Wales has come within touching distance for Penarth Labour AM Vaughan Gething after his rival for the Wales Labour Party leadership, Mark Drakeford, revealed – in a car-crash tv interview – that he doesn’t really fancy the job all that much.
Left-wing Corbyn-supporting Drakeford is one of many Labour politicians in the Welsh Assembly who have risen without trace, have never really been subjected to much scrutiny until now and clearly possess precious little in the way of media skills.
In an unchallenging BBC Wales interview this week Drakeford let it slip that he was “a hesitant candidate” and that he had “no great personal ambition to be First Minister”.
Digging an even deeper hole for himself, Drakeford sounded like an elderly snowflake as he went on to admit “ I don’t think I will look forward to doing First Minister’s questions particularly. I don’t particularly like that sort of bear-garden atmosphere or way of doing politics.”
Making matters worse, he then revealed “I don’t look forward to doing media interviews. I think some people are fine with them. Me, I’m always nervous before I do them and so on.”.
…It now turns out he was right to be nervous.
In making that frank – but somewhat lukewarm – assessment of himself, Drakeford appears to have confirmed he’d be well advised to duck the interviews, pass up on the pressure – and maybe forget all about becoming First Minister.
There was desperate attempt to recover lost ground in a further tv interview last night but, in that, Drakeford again looked like what he is – an old man whose future is in the rear-view mirror.
In the latest poll Drakeford averages only 4.0out of 10, compared to 4.4 for Gething and 4.5 for the third candidate, Baroness Eluned Morgan. In terms of selecting the best single candidate, 9% chose Morgan, 8% chose Gething, ..but only 5% plumped for Drakeford.
The New Statesman says party members “may start to question whether Mark Drakeford as Leader would be an electoral asset for his party.”