Seat row union claims to influence policy in Wales

The union at the centre of controversy over the selection of a Labour parliamentary candidate has heaped praise on the party's Welsh leadership and claimed to influence policies in Wales

Unite says it has achieved "very significant results" in policy areas thanks to its relationships with members of the Welsh assembly and the first minister "which would serve as a very satisfactory model for Westminster".

In his June report, which has been leaked to the Guido Fawkes blog, Unite's political director Steve Hart says the union has achieved political support for "public sector workers and strikes" in Wales.

The report says: "As with Scotland, Unite involvement and indeed leadership in Welsh politics is very notable. Not only do we have relationships with the Welsh assembly and its members, and with the first minister which would serve as very satisfactory model for Westminster, but we achieve very significant results, whether on issues such as blacklisting, support for public sector workers and strikes or broader social issues.

"Welsh government and relations between trade unions and party are what we would hope for and expect with a social democratic party - in no small measure due to the leadership of Unite and its regional committee in Wales."

Former Pontypridd MP Kim Howells waded into the debate over the union's influence last weekend. His warning about Labour being seen as a party of vested interests may have been aimed at the Labour leadership in Westminster but the Unite report suggests it may strike a chord with some closer to home.

A Welsh government source said: "We do not comment on leaked documents."