1. ITV Report

First Minister's Questions...taking the register

Bethan Jenkins AM Photo: ITV Wales News

Well, here we are again. A new term and party leaders bursting with enthusiasm after the Christmas break. The First Minister, in pole position at the lectern, was no doubt pleased to be able to finally tick Bethan Jenkins' name off the register, after her reinstatement by the Plaid group earlier today. Looks like she's found new friends in the holidays as she's now sitting at the back of the class next to Rhodri Glyn.

And really it was first day back for all of us as well, as we did the rounds of the party pressers this morning. Plaid along with the other parties have been expressing a fair amount of dissatisfaction at the way they feel their questions are parried away by the First Minister. According to them, his answers either refer them to the 'Programme for Government' for inspiration or blame the dark powers at Westminster for all our ills.

So it was with some energy that Plaid Leader Leanne Wood blazed the trail at FMQ's today.

Given that IDS, the quiet man, was this afternoon at Westminster making a lot of noise about changes to benefits which will affect many people in Wales, Leanne demanded to know just how many people in Wales might be affected by changes in the benefit system. The FM didn't know which made Leanne wring her hands with disappointment and suggest somewhat tartly that perhaps he could write to her with the answers when he happened to find out!

She then went on to accuse the FM of not standing up for the people of Wales in the face of the proposed changes.

Next to leap to his feet, was the leader of the opposition, Andrew RT Davies. Given all the talk about the FM wanting to buy Cardiff Wales Airport, the Tories have been anxious about whether us tax payers will be getting value for money. With cash and foreign travel on his mind he was keen to know how many overseas trips the FM would take this year in a bid to drive exports up for Wales? RT claimed the latest figures showed a drop of five percent which represented a whopping 200 million pounds. What would the FM do to reverse the trend?

Apparently quite a lot with trips this year to Turkey, Dublin , San Francisco, New York, Japan and India.

Speaking in his best basso profundo voice that seemed to travel up from his shoes, RT delivered his line with a flourish. He suggested that the FM could do worse than take a leaf out of the increasingly successful Swansea City's book in terms of generating wealth for Wales.

Was there to be nothing to smile about this week? Not according to the Leader of the Welsh Liberal Democrats Kirsty Williams. Now, there's nothing worse than a trip to the dentist apart from not being able to take a trip to the dentist when you need one and Kirsty was grinding her teeth about the shortage of NHS dentists in Wales. She said that the Welsh Government wasn't meeting its target in providing NHS services to the public. The FM bit back.