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  1. Welsh Assembly members fail to elect a first minister after a tied vote between Labour's Carwyn Jones and Plaid Cymru's Leanne Wood
  2. Plaid Cymru's Elin Jones is elected presiding officer
  3. Ann Jones, of Labour, is elected deputy presiding officer

Live Reporting

By Alun Jones and Nia Harri

All times stated are UK


That brings Senedd Live's coverage of the extraordinary first day of the Fifth Assembly to a close.

We'll be back whenever the Assembly is reconvened.


Analysis by Nick Servini, BBC Wales political editor

Nick Servini

Political editor, Wales

This is about Plaid Cymru flexing its muscles and sending out a signal, following the accusations that Labour had had it easy in the previous five years in the assembly.

Labour say it is a stunt, with Plaid Cymru doing deals with the Conservatives and UKIP.

Plaid's riposte is that Labour have been arrogant in the run up to Wednesday's events, with Carwyn Jones offering nothing clear on his plans for government.

Labour AMs have been walking around with faces like thunder and although one Plaid Cymru AM has said it was not about giving them "a bloody nose", it has created bad blood.

What next?

Well, they'll return next week for another vote knowing that AMs have 28 days to decide on a first minister - that's 28 days from the day of the election, which would take us to 2 June.

If there is no agreement the secretary of state for Wales can call a fresh election.

'A proper Parliament'

Plaid Cymru Simon Thomas tweets

'Labour had no divine right' to first minister role

Statement by the Welsh Conservative Leader

The Conservatives have 11 AMs, losing three AMs in Cardiff Bay on 5 May.

Welsh Conservative leader Andrew RT Davies says:

Last week, less than 16% of voters backed the status quo and another five years of Labour. Having seen their share of the vote drop by 8%, many voters across Wales moved away from Labour last week and, crucially, the Party did not win a majority at the 2016 election. As such, Labour had no divine right to assume the First Ministership today. It is for new Assembly Members to explore, and discuss, the best way forward for the Welsh nation, which has for too long fallen behind the rest of the UK. Certainly, I sense an appetite for a new kind of collaborative Welsh politics, and would welcome further discussions to build on those which led to today's vote. Our ambitious manifesto was packed full of ideas we believe could make a difference to people across the country. As we analyse the impact of the new election results on Wales, Welsh Conservatives remain steadfastly committed to delivering for communities across the country.”

Former Labour minister's reaction

BBC's Daniel Davies tweets

Deciding on a First Minister - timeframe

AMs have 28 days to decide on a First Minister - that's 28 days from the day of the election, which would take us to June 2nd. 

If there is no agreement the Secretary of Sate for Wales can call a fresh election. 

Despite losing one seat at the assembly election, Mr Jones had said he expected to form a minority Labour government with 29 of the assembly's 60 members.  

Meeting adjourned

The Presiding Officer Elin Jones adjourns the Senedd meeting to a later date, saying reopening nominations for First Minister now would bring the same result.

'Surprised other parties supported them'

BBC Wales Political Editor Nick Servini tweets

What next?

The AMs are returning to the Chamber.

'What a ragbag coalition'

Labour AM Alun Davies tweets

Statement by Plaid Cymru group in the Assembly

On May 5th, Wales chose not to elect one single party to govern Wales with a majority. As is the convention, the biggest party were given an opportunity to reach an agreement on forming a government which could lead Wales with the support of the majority of members in the National Assembly. 

They took the decision not to pursue that option, and were not prepared to give the process of negotiation any further time. 

As a result, the Plaid Cymru group followed normal Parliamentary protocol and nominated Leanne Wood for First Minister. Carwyn Jones was informed of this decision yesterday. 

Since that time, and as far as Plaid Cymru is aware, there have been no formal discussions, agreements or deals pursued between any party. 

This afternoon, the Assembly failed to reach agreement on who should become First Minister and form the next government. It is now for the parties to discuss this matter further in order to seek the best outcome for Wales.   

"What do I do now?"

Ciaran Jenkins tweets

'Extraordinary stuff in Wales'

BBC's Nick Eardley tweets

Carwyn Jones after the roll-call vote

Carwyn Jones after the roll-call vote

Vote for First Minister tied 29-29

The vote for First Minister was tied 29-29, and the Presiding Officer says plenary is postponed.   

So Mr Jones fails to be elected first minister, but will continue to act as FM while he seeks allies.  

The Conservatives and UKIP supported moves by Plaid Cymru to give the job to Plaid leader Leanne Wood instead. 

Carwyn Jones/Leanne Wood

Kirsty Williams votes for Carwyn Jones

The only Liberal Democrat, Kirsty Williams, votes for Carwyn Jones.

The Lib Dems issue a statement in which Kirsty Williams says: "I was not re-elected into the National Assembly to support a ragtag coalition made up of UKIP Assembly Members who at the moment can't even agree with each other".

Voting by alphabetical order

AMs are voting for FM in roll call by alphabetical order, so the last two names are, crucially, Kirsty Williams and Leanne Wood.  

Nominations for the post of First Minister

Carwyn Jones and Leanne Wood are nominated for the post of First Minister.

Deputy Presiding Officer elected

Ann Jones has been elected as the Deputy Presiding Officer. 

John Griffiths had 29 votes while Ann Jones had 30 votes  

Ann Jones
Ann Jones

Taking the chair

Rosemary Butler welcomes her successor

'FM vote might be tied'

Vaughan Roderick tweets

Candidates for Deputy Presiding Officer

AMs will vote next on the post of Deputy Presiding Officer.

The candidates are Labour's Ann Jones and John Griffiths.

AMs have left the Assembly chamber again to vote.

New Presiding Officer

Elin Jones elected. 

Ms Jones was Minister for Rural Affairs between 2007-11, and has been an AM since 1999. 

She defeated fellow Plaid AM Dafydd Elis-Thomas by 35 votes to 24, with one AM abstaining. 

Her first words were, "You all look very different from up here!"    

Elin Jones

'Both would do a great job'

Former AM, now MP tweets

Secret ballot

AMs have gone out to vote in the secret ballot to select which of the two should become presiding officer.  

'Strengthening the Welsh constitution'

Former presiding officer Lord Dafydd Elis-Thomas, Plaid AM for Dwyfor Meirionnydd, says that  "Strengthening the Welsh constitution has been the main aim and pleasure in my life."

Dafydd Elis-Thomas
Dafydd Elis-Thomas


Dafydd Elis-Thomas was nominated by Adam Price and seconded by Neil Hamilton. 

Elin Jones was nominated by Dai Lloyd and seconded by Jane Hutt. 

'Safeguard the good reputation'

Plaid Cymru Ceredigion AM Elin Jones tells the Senedd: "I would promote and safeguard the good reputation of this assembly"  

Elin Jones
Elin Jones

A Presiding Officer from Plaid Cymru

Elin Jones and Dafydd Elis-Thomas from Plaid Cymru are the two AMs nominated for the post of Presiding Officer.

Figurehead of the National Assembly

The assembly cannot elect a presiding officer and deputy presiding officer from the same political group, and one must be from the governing party.

The presiding officer acts as the figurehead of the National Assembly for Wales, chairing meetings in the Siambr (Senedd chamber) that are known as plenary.

The presiding officer is the second-highest paid job in the assembly, behind the first minister. 

He or she gets £105,000 - more than ministers, who earn £100,000, and more than opposition party leaders who can earn up to £100,000. 

The deputy presiding officer gets £85,000. The first minister is paid £140,000. 


Prynhawn da

Welcome to Senedd Live at the beginning of the Fifth Assembly. 

The first item of business for the new Assembly is the election of a Presiding Officer and Deputy Presiding Officer.

The vote comes after former presiding officer Dame Rosemary Butler stood down as an AM.

Several names from across the parties have been suggested, although it is not yet clear if any of them have secured the support needed to win.

In a secret ballot, as well as presiding officer, AMs will also appoint a colleague as deputy presiding officer, a position formerly held by Conservative AM David Melding, who has ruled himself out for the presiding officer job.

Dame Rosemary Butler returns for the final time this afternoon until a successor is elected.
Dame Rosemary Butler returns for the final time this afternoon until a successor is elected.