David Cornock, Parliamentary correspondent, Wales

David Cornock Parliamentary correspondent, Wales

The place to come for the Welsh view of Westminster and updates on the politics and personalities of Parliament

Conservative lawyers back more powers for Wales

Yesterday's bearpit is almost deserted. As I write, there are probably more MPs in Rochester and Strood than in the House of Commons.

On a slow news day at Westminster (apart from the NHS England plan) there has been little to disturb the bulletin editors, unless you count the Westminster Dog of the Year show. Tory Chief Whip Michael Gove's dog claimed second prize but his absence from the Commons prompted questions from Cardiff West Labour MP Kevin Brennan.

Today's less frantic atmosphere has given me time to catch up on a few administrative tasks and a little light reading. In the fall-out from the Scottish referendum, I confess I missed an interesting contribution to the debate over the UK's future from the Society of Conservative Lawyers, whose chairman is the former Secretary of State for Wales Lord (David) Hunt. You can read the society's working party report on "Our Quasi-federal United Kingdom".

Some of the contributors - David Melding, Alan Trench - will be familiar to students of the devolution industry. Former Attorney General Dominic Grieve is involved. The report highlights what the authors see as the weaknesses of the current devolution settlement - inconsistency, unfairness to England and the failure to match spending power with tax-raising responsibility - and put forward its own solutions.

This chiefly involves Westminster passing what they call "the Statute of Union" which would begin "It is hereby declared that the United Kingdom is a quasi-federal, voluntary union of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland."

Read full article Conservative lawyers back more powers for Wales

Crabb comes out of his shell as he's grilled by MPs

Away from the bearpit atmosphere of the Commons chamber, Stephen Crabb has this afternoon been grilled by MPs on the Welsh affairs committee.

It was a slightly gentler occasion than this morning's question time. Unusually, he used first names when answering committee members' questions. So what did we learn?

Read full article Crabb comes out of his shell as he's grilled by MPs

Lopsided devolution, the NHS and a Plaid Cymru 'coup'

It's back! Three and a half months after Wales Office ministers last answered MPs' questions, they returned to the House of Commons today.

The cast had changed. David Jones was replaced as secretary of state for Wales by Stephen Crabb in July's cabinet reshuffle, and his old job as a junior minister taken by Alun Cairns.

Read full article Lopsided devolution, the NHS and a Plaid Cymru 'coup'

Hold the front page! MPs do battle over Welsh health

With parliament only having returned recently from its conference and summer recesses, MPs have not had time to exchange views on the NHS in Wales recently.

They soon made up for it. At question time today, Chester MP Stephen Mosley was the first Tory to complain about "strains" on healthcare in his constituency he says are caused by patients from Wales.

Read full article Hold the front page! MPs do battle over Welsh health

Poor Welsh children 'lagging behind' rest of UK

Their first "state of the nation" report made my jaw drop, with its analysis of school performance by children from similar backgrounds across the UK,

This year's report by the social mobility and child poverty commission is equally thought-provoking, although it does have the odd silver lining to an otherwise depressing cloud of data for Welsh government ministers.

Read full article Poor Welsh children 'lagging behind' rest of UK

Wine and Welshcakes mark 50 years of Welsh Secretaries

Welsh secretaries at reception
The present and eight former Welsh secretaries gathered for the celebration

Is there a collective noun for secretaries of state for Wales?

Nine of the 17 politicians to have held the post turned out at Gwydyr House tonight for a reception to mark the 50th anniversary of its creation after Harold Wilson's election victory in October 1964.

Read full article Wine and Welshcakes mark 50 years of Welsh Secretaries

Welsh minister in a muddle over 'Mr Mac ap Jones'

Do you know Mr Mac ap Jones?

Probably not, since he is the creation of the former cabinet minister Lord Richard of Ammanford. Or rather, he might argue that Mr Mac ap Jones is the creation of clause 8 of the Wales Bill, (which had its committee stage in the House of Lords last night).

Read full article Welsh minister in a muddle over 'Mr Mac ap Jones'

Peers - and two first ministers - talk money and power

If Monday was a political anorak's idea of heaven, then today all our constitutional Christmases have come at once.

As I speak, their lordships are getting their teeth into the Wales Bill, which followed a short debate on the Middle East. The first speaker in the Welsh debate, Liberal Democrat Lord Roberts of Llandudno, was heard to complain "they're all leaving" as he got up to speak. The self-described manic street preachers is used to a more captive audience.

Read full article Peers - and two first ministers - talk money and power

MPs debate meaning of Scottish vote for Wales

MPs have now spent almost two hours debating "Devolution following the Scotland referendum".

So what have we learnt so far? (Newcomers may find this dictionary helpful.)

Read full article MPs debate meaning of Scottish vote for Wales

More AMs? 'Any advance on 100? Any advance on 120?'

How many politicians do we need?

Wales currently has 40 MPs, 60 AMs, 4 MEPs, quite a few peers and more councillors than I can count without using a calculator. Last night's debate in the House of Lords focused on the number of assembly members in Cardiff Bay.

Read full article More AMs? 'Any advance on 100? Any advance on 120?'

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About David

David Cornock has been covering politics from Westminster for more than two decades.

He grew up near Penarth in South Wales and trained on the Western Mail.

He moved to London in 1988 and became the newspaper's political editor.

In 1995, he joined BBC Wales as its parliamentary correspondent.

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