Election 2017

Election 2017: A dreadful night for Welsh Tories

Craig Williams Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Craig Williams lost Cardiff North, where he was the candidate for the Conservatives and had been the MP

It was a dreadful night for Conservatives in Wales.

The bitter recriminations will now begin everywhere, and the Tory HQ in Cardiff will be no exception.

They made great play of Theresa May campaigning in Labour-held target seats in Bridgend, Wrexham and Clwyd South, and in the end they did not seriously challenge in any of them.

With hindsight, Mrs May would have been better off shoring up support in Cardiff North, Gower and Vale of Clwyd.

So what went wrong? Did they run a terrible campaign?

Was it a victory of hope over fear, as Jeremy Corbyn would have us believe, or did the country send a signal to Downing Street that it wanted a softer Brexit?

There were local problems with the campaign that will be magnified by the success of their counterparts in Scotland.

That is a problem Plaid Cymru will be able to tell them all about.

Ruth Davidson is the unmistakeable leader of the Scottish party there while the Welsh Tories had three different men in three different debates.

Sources tell me the Welsh-dimension to the campaign was non-existent.

That said, there were times when it just felt that the Conservatives in Wales were being steam-rollered by a tidal wave of red which may have been impossible to stop no matter what was done differently at a local level.

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