20mph: Petition creator says new speed limits will cost Labour next election

The First Minister, Mark Drakeford, said during FMQs that the new law will not be repealed.

The man behind Wales' biggest ever petition against the 20mph speed limit has criticised Welsh Labour's response to the outpouring of public anger at the new law.

He said has "no expectation" that the petition, now with more than 375,000 signatures, will change anything.

Mark Baker, from Bridgend, set up a petition via the Senedd's petition committee, asking the Welsh Government to rescind the law bringing in a 20mph default speed limit across Wales.

The law came into effect on Sunday (17 September) and since then, the petition has become the Senedd's biggest ever.

The former Labour Party member says he started the petition out of anger that the default 20mph speed limit was brought in without fully explaining it to people.

Lee Waters MS will face a vote of no confidence next week which has been brought forward by the Welsh Conservatives.

Labour ministers have repeatedly said the law will not be repealed and say it will take time to "bed in" and for people to get used to it.

The Welsh Conservatives plan to force a vote of no confidence in the Deputy Minister for Climate Change, Lee Waters MS, who has spearheaded the policy.

The Welsh Government says that the policy will save lives and make communities safer for everyone, including motorists. They also point to cross-party support in votes in the Senedd over the last four years.Mr Baker submitted the petition earlier in September, but was contacted by the petitions office to edit the wording, removing language like "stupid law" and that the person who had come up with the idea "should resign".

He said: "I was happy to edit it just so it went up and then on Monday, I arrived at work and it had gone to 100,000."

"I think Labour have been extremely ignorant. Certain senior ministers [have shown] arrogance really over just dismissing this amount of people.

It is estimated that the move will save the NHS millions of pounds per year. Credit: Dominic Lipinski/PA

"This is going to highlight the disgust and toxicity in politics these days. They feel that they can put something in there without actually asking us. They've been democratically elected, but then [are] undemocratically passing laws."

"I have no expectation that it will change anything but I hope what it does is make a lot of candidates nervous in the next Senedd election because the word on socials is they've lost their support.

"I hate to say it because I've been a socialist all my life but I genuinely don't think they will win the next Senedd election but I hope it doesn't affect the next General Election."

He still, he says, wants a UK Labour Government. "You've got UK Labour pushing a green agenda today after our Prime Minister has weakened his green policies, yet Welsh Labour has put out a policy that pushes emissions into the air. Slower speeds, lower gears higher revs, more fuel, more emissions."

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