|The Right Honourable|
Llewellwyn's official portrait.
|20th Prime Minister of the Republic of Rainier|
Assumed office |
10th September 2017
|Preceded by||Andrew Clarkson|
|Constituency||Vancouver West (1999-present)|
|Leader of the Labour Party|
Assumed office |
30th November 2016
|Preceded by||Nigel Elystan|
|Leader of the Opposition|
30th November 2016 – 10th September 2017
|Prime Minister||Andrew Clarkson|
|Preceded by||Nigel Elystan|
|Succeeded by||Mary Towers|
|Minister of Foreign Affairs|
12th May 2005 – 3rd October 2009
|Prime Minister||Diane Hall|
|Preceded by||Michael Shaw|
|Succeeded by||David Robinson|
12th June 1968 (age 51)|
|Political party||Labour Party|
|Alma mater||University of British Columbia|
Alexander Nathan Llewellwyn (born 12th June 1968) is a Rainian politician who currently serves as the 20th Prime Minister of Rainier. He also serves as the incumbent leader of the Labour Party as well as Leader of the Opposition from 2016-2017 and Minister of Foreign Affairs from 2005-2009.
Llewellwyn was born in 1968 in the city of Seattle, studying Political Science at the University of British Columbia. He worked as an adviser for the Labour government in the early 1990's and in 1999 becoming MP for Vancouver West. In 2005 he was made Minister of Foreign Affairs in the government of Diane Hall where he worked with other G20 foreign ministers to coordinate fiscal policies following the 2008 financial crisis. He was removed from the role following the election of a National Union government in 2009.
Llewellwyn retired from frontline politics in 2009, working on the backbanchers supporting centre-left politics. However he made a political comeback in 2016 when he was speculated to be Labour's candidate for President. Llewellwyn instead was instrumental in persuading Labour leader Nigel Elystan to stand as President. Subsequently Elystan resigned as Labour leader with Llewellwyn being elected Labour leader as a result with 60% of the party's backing. His election as Labour leader saw the party's approval ratings raise from around 35% to 44%. The 2017 House of Councillors election was spearheaded by Llewellwyn who lead the party to its best result since the 1980's with 44% of the vote and 63 seat. Llewellwyn subsequently formed a government consisting entirely of Labour ministers with confidence and supply from the Green-Left Movement.
Llewellwyn is seen as being on the right of his party, being identified as a centre-left social democrat. The Economic Times stated Llewellwyn was part of the "Third Way" movement being compared to former British Prime Minister Tony Blair and German Chancellor Gerhard Schröder in his political style.
- 1 Early life
- 2 Member of Parliament
- 3 Cabinet Minister
- 4 Opposition
- 5 Prime Minister
- 6 Political positions
- 7 Controversies
- 8 Personal life
Alexander Llewellwyn was born in the city of Seattle on the 12th June 1968 in a family of Welsh and Ulster descent. His father David Llewellwyn was a commercial lawyer who had fought in the Second World War whilst his mother Mary's family had emigrated to Rainier following the partition of Ireland. Llewellwyn was the family's second child, having an older sister Arlene. Llewellwyn states his upbringing was "not particularly religious".
Llewellwyn graduated from his high school in 1986 enrolling in the University of British Columbia as an undergraduate in Political Science. During his time in university he joined the Labour party being elected the Chair of the UBC's Labour Society in 1988. In 1989 he graduated from UBC and was employed by the Labour government to serve as an adviser to the foreign ministry.
Between 1990-1995 Llewellwyn travelled to Sierra, Japan and China as part of Rainian trade delegations, where he attained a reputation as being "extremely skilled on the issue of American-Asian relations". He was dropped as a policy adviser to the government following the 1995 election which saw the Maddock government lose power to the NUP under Gerald Fairbrook. Llewellwyn was put forward as a candidate for the seat of Portland South but lost to the NUP candidate by a margin of 1,100 votes.
Llewellwyn continued to work as a policy researcher on foreign relations for the Labour party in particular focusing on American-Asian relations. Llewellwyn was one of the drafters of Social Democracy and Asian Relations in the 21st Century, a policy paper which called for deeper economic ties with the Qing Empire and a more flexible approach to the Japanese defence treaty. The paper was controversial at its writing and not made part of official party policy.
Member of Parliament
In the 1999 election Llewellwyn became the Labour candidate for the safe seat of Vancouver West in an election that saw Labour make modest gains. Nevertheless Labour leader Michelle O'Donnell resigned following the election, resulting in Llewellwyn to support Diane Hall for the post of Labour leader who called for a political renewal. The leadership however was won by former Treasury Minister Ken Huang who was seen as part of Labour's "old guard" of politicians.
Party tensions between the old guard of politicians who had served in government from 1981-1995 and new MP's elected in 1995 and 1999 continued throughout the Huang's leadership with Hall and Llewellwyn reportedly working to undermine Stephen. The instability in the party led to it to face a third consecutive defeat in 2003 election. Huang resigned from the leadership leading to Hall and Llewellwyn announce a joint ticket for the party leadership promising to revive the party's flagging fortunes. Hall was elected overwhelmingly as party leader as Llewellwyn was appointed deputy leader and Labour spokesperson for Foreign Affairs.
Following Hall's election as party leader Labour's dismal polling figures saw a noticeable rise, especially following the discovery of no WMD's during the Iraq War which led to the unpopularity of the Gerald Fairbrook government. The announcement of the 2005 snap election for the House of Councillors following the TriMet affair saw Labour go into the campaign as the initial favourites - however a strong campaign by the Green-Left Movement and Hall's weak media presence led to the election to be very tight with both the Labour getting 95 seats, with the NUP getting 94 and trailing by less than 100 votes. A coalition government however was negotiated between Labour and the United Left Alliance (later renamed the Green-Left Movement) who got 41 seats with the two parties commanding a majority in the House of Councillors.
Following the announcement of a coalition government Llewellwyn was appointed Minister of Foreign Affairs. The Green-Left leader Marie Ossewaarde was offered the post but turned it down to become Minister of the Treasury instead. Llewellwyn was at the time of his appointment the youngest foreign minister in Rainier's history.
Upon his appointment as Foreign Minister Llewellwyn stated that his government would no longer follow a policy of neoconservatism. Llewellwyn stated that whilst the 20th century demanded a foreign policy based around a bipolar international order, the 21st century demanded more flexible approaches in the face of a multi-faceted international order and that as a result Rainier has to expand beyond its established alliances to respond to new international challenges.
During the 2005 election campaign both the Labour party and Green-Left Movement had campaigned on withdrawing Rainian troops from Iraq. On the 7th June 2005 Llewellwyn said that the 3,850 Rainian troops then stationed in Iraq would be withdrawn from the country within a month calling the continued presence "unsustainable and risky for regional security". The move to withdraw troops resulted in criticism from the right.
Despite pressure from Green-Left coalition partners the government refused to withdraw troops from Afghanistan although it did downsize the amount of troops deployed there. During the 2006 Lebanon War Llewellwyn ordered Rainian citizens in Lebanon to move to Rainier; however Llewellwyn reiterated the government's position in support of a UN-brokered ceasefire calling Israel's actions excessive.
In 2006 Llewellwyn heavily criticised Junichiro Koizumi's Yasukuni Shrine visit on the basis that it alienated regional partners, repeating similar criticism when Shinzō Abe also visited the shrine. Rainian and Sierran criticism of visits to Yasukuni was seen as a factor for Abe's successor Yasuo Fukuda to explicitly state that he would not visit the shrine.
Following the start of the financial crisis Llewellwyn met with foreign ministers from several countries including Sierra, the UK, France, Germany and Japan to coordinate an effective global response to the crisis. This helped lead to the creation of the G20.
During the onset of the great recession the low polling ratings of the Labour party led to speculations over a party coup regarding the leadership of Diane Hall. Llewellwyn was consistently mooted as a potential leader due to his high profile in the party and relative distance from the financial crisis. However Llewellwyn stated that he was "100% behind the Prime Minister".
In the run-up to the 2009 House of Councillors election Llewellwyn was a prominent fixture of the Labour campaign, defending the Labour government's role in foreign affairs. The Labour government however suffered a devastating loss getting only 27% of the vote. Llewellwyn's majority in Vancouver West was also slashed to being only 2% ahead of his NUP competitor.
After the 2009 election Llewellwyn and Hall both resigned from the Labour leadership and deputy leadership. Although initially speculated to be a candidate for the Labour leadership Llewellwyn stated he would no longer be in frontline politics "for the time being" opting instead to sit on the backbenches. Llewellwyn stated that the 2009 election result was a clear indication from voters that Labour needed "serious reform as a party" and that he would be more effective sponsoring such reform on the backbenches.
On the 17th November 2012 Llewellwyn wrote "New Directions: Re-thinking Labour Politics" which criticised the Labour party, the under Samuel Paul, for its lack of interest in political, social and economic reform. Llewellwyn stated that "unless we are a radical party, a party that supports radical change, we will lose to vested interests...if we are offering the status quo, the voters will just vote for the party of the status quo, the National Union".
In opposition Llewellwyn was a consistent critic of the government's austerity policy, calling the Clarkson government "one of the most incompetent administrations in regards to economic management" and that the government's lack of investment would render Rainier "in the shadow in technological and economic terms behind our Asian competitors". He also said that the Clarkson's government anti-China policy would put Rainier on the wrong side of history, and that the Clarkson government "should recognise that cordial Rainian-Chinese ties underpin our economic stability".
Following the election of Nigel Elystan as Labour leader Llewellwyn was offered to return to the frontbench to serve as Shadow Foreign Affairs Minister. Llewellwyn refused to take the job but was later reported to be one of Elystan's policy advisers.
In 2016 Llewellwyn was speculated in the press to be Labour's candidate for President in the election scheduled for that year. Llewellwyn stated that he would consider running for president if there was sufficient support from within the Labour party.
However in October 2016 after meeting with Llewellwyn to discuss the future of the Labour party Nigel Elystan after talking with high ranking members of the Labour party announced he would run for President and as such resign from the Labour leadership. Llewellwyn was the first candidate to announce his intention to run for Labour leadership. Llewellwyn had the backing of Elystan for the post with no other MP's having the sufficient nominations to contest the leadership; Llewellwyn thus won in a walkover becoming Labour leader on the 30th November. He also became Leader of the Opposition.
Llewellwyn's ascent to the Labour leadership alongside corruption scandals plaguing the NUP resulted in Labour's polling ratings to increase as Llewellwyn was seen as a charismatic and competent leader, with Labour's lead in the polls reaching highs of 20%. In December Elystan was elected President defeating incumbent Karen Stephens which resulted in polling ratings to again increase for Labour. Llewellwyn stated that if Labour came to office he would ensure the failed policies of the Clarkson government would be ended promoting an "inclusive reformist government".
During the 2017 House of Councillors election Llewellwyn was put at the forefront of the Labour campaign which was described in the press as being "presidential" in style. Llewellwyn's campaign was noted as being a move to the left for Labour on spending policy but a move to the right on immigration. During the campaign Llewellwyn consistently ranked as the preferred candidate for prime minister and was seen as winning two debates on the 11 and 18 August.
The election saw Labour's best result since 1989 with 43.94% of the vote and 63 seats with a 8.89% swing. Llewellwyn stated the result was proof that the country endorsed change in a progressive direction. Following the election Llewellwyn negotiated a confidence and supply agreement with the Green-Left Movement with promises to oversee the implementation of a form of carbon pricing and elimination of tuition fees. This gave Llewellwyn's government a working majority of 4 seats. Llewellwyn was subsequently sworn in on the 10th September as Rainier's 20th Prime Minister and the sixth to come from the Labour party.
Llewellwyn was sworn in as Prime Minister on the 10th September after a majority of MP's (70) voting for his investiture. His government consisted entirely of Labour ministers, with some such as Geoffrey Soames and Tim Duncan having served in the last Labour government. A new Ministry, the Ministry of Political Reform and Regional Development, was created. On the 14th October Labour attained a majority in the House of Senators, getting 40 seats. This gave Llewellwyn's government a majority in both Houses of Parliament allowing him to pass legalisation without engaging in negotiations with the opposition.
Llewellwyn outlined his domestic policy objectives, which included increased investment in education and infrastructure and pursing constitutional reform to streamline Rainian politics. Llewellwyn stated that in office he aims to ensure that the social division, economic incompetence and corruption that the Clarkson government had presided over would be ended and that a new style of politics would be created to solve political apathy.
On the 29th October 2017 the House of Councillors passed the Marriage Reform Act 2017 which legalised same-sex marriage in Rainier with 171 votes in favour and 77 votes against.
Upon coming to office the Llewellwyn government formed the Council of Economic Revival and Innovation (CERI) to advise the economic on pursuing strategies of economic growth and investment. Strategies of economic growth suggested include investment in education, health and infrastructure as well as economic decentralisation to the provinces. CERI has also advocated for the government to allow the Reserve Bank of Rainier the ability to set interest rates independent of government.
In a "mini-budget" scheduled for November 2017 Llewellwyn has stated that his government will pursue a £185 billion ($111.81 billion) investment programme that will modernise Rainian infrastructure and develop the Rainian information technology sector to ensure Rainier becomes a regional leader in technological innovation and development. Llewellwyn has stated that without economic stimulus the Rainian economy will not escape low growth.
The Llewellwyn government has pursued an active interest in encouraging political and constitutional reform. In particular, the Llewellwyn government has set up a commission to examine reform to parliament that would streamline the political process and allowing for greater accountability. Llewellwyn has also stated that the government will examine electoral and judicial reform, which Llewellwyn has alleged has been long overdue.
In November 2017 Llewellwyn announced the government intended to hold a referendum sometime around 2019 to approve of changes to the constitution that would amongst other things extend the term of the House of Councillors, reform the electoral system and increase decentralisation to provincial governments.
In September 2017 the Llewellwyn government opened a formal investigation into the Cash-for-Votes scandal that had seen the National Union Party accused of embezzling £30 million for election campaigns. Llewellwyn also stated that the government would reform the public finance system to encourage greater transparency to ensure the loopholes that enabled "Cash-for-votes" would no longer exist.
Llewellwyn has been described as being on the centre-left of the Labour party, sharing similarities with Blairism and Scandinavian social democratic parties. Llewellwyn has called himself a social democrat who "believes in both the power of a free market to ensure a dynamic society, and the state to ensure the protection of those excluded from the market". However during the 2017 House of Councillors election the Daily Gazette noted Llewellwyn had moved "well to the left" since becoming leader of the Labour party, supporting more traditional Labour party policies.
Llewellwyn called the best Rainian Prime Minister overall as being Nicholas Lennox on the grounds of his wartime leadership, but also praised Matthew Griffiths on the grounds Griffiths "understood the need to modernise politically and economically". Llewellwyn however has emphasised the need to "continue to modernise and change...I believe that we need to, as a country and a party, be at the forefront of leading change in the global context". Llewellwyn has criticised the lack of modernisation of Rainian politics, saying "Rainian politics is mired with analogue practices in a digital age".
Llewellwyn believes that as Asian markets expand Rainier should "take the initiative" and reorient its foreign policy to ensure close links with Asian countries. In particular Llewellwyn has been a passionate supporter of better ties with China, saying Rainier's current policy is "to treat a partner as an enemy". Llewellwyn has vocally criticised Japanese Prime Ministerial visits to the Yasukuni Shrine. Following Junichiro Koizumi's August 15 visit to the shrine in 2006 Llewellwyn stated the Japanese prime minister "was strongly risking continued ties with our Asian partners and Japan" and has suggested the names of the 14 class-A war criminals in the shrine be moved elsewhere.
Llewellwyn called for more cooperation with the Conference of American States on foreign policy issues saying the lack of cohesion amongst member states "undermines our ability to define clear foreign policy goals.". Llewellwyn however rejects American Unionism as an "idealistic policy that would not benefit Rainier".
In regards to the Israel-Palestine conflict Llewellwyn has criticised Israel as engaging in "dangerous ethnic politics in Palestine" and has called for a two-state solution in the region. He however explicitly condemned Hamas and Hezbollah as "terrorist organisations" and stated that Israel has "legitimate concerns" over Iranian foreign policy. Llewellwyn voted against Rainian entry into the Iraq War in 2003 but voted in support of airstrikes against Syrian forces loyal to Bashar al-Assad in 2014. In 2017 Llewellwyn stated that countries in the region should follow the example of Turkey in dealing with the Syrian refugee crisis. Llewellwyn has criticised Rainier's strong ties with Saudi Arabia on the grounds of Saudi Arabian war crimes in Yemen.
Llewellwyn criticised the United Kingdom's decision to vote for Brexit stating that the UK "would become a second-rate country" if it left the European Union. Llewellwyn is seen as a strong advocate for Rainian-EU ties.
Following the 2014–2017 Venezuelan protests Llewellwyn condemned Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro for his lack of dialogue with the opposition, affirming that if Labour came to power it would retain sanctions on the country.
Llewellwyn has stated that Rainier needs to develop "a social market economy that can harness both the dynamism of the free market and ensure a degree of social protection". Llewellwyn has stated that since the 2010's oil glut there needs to be a diversification away from oil, presenting in 2017 an alternative budget that would constitute a "new deal" for Rainier. Llewellwyn's proposals included massive investment into the technology industry, a massive house building programme and a modernisation of the infrastructure system.
In response to the 2008 financial crisis Llewellwyn has stated that there needs to be a division between investment and retail banking whilst also stating that bankers' bonuses should be capped. Llewellwyn stated such measures "were to ensure the banking sector is stable for the future rather than vulnerable to another financial crisis."
Llewellwyn has stated that "free trade has on the whole benefited most elements of society" but has promised to renegotiate several trade deals such as the Trans-Pacific Partnership on the basis that "it favours vested interests rather than the consumer".
During the 2005 election campaign Llewellwyn called immigration a "non-issue" stating "I think most people accept that a degree of immigration is basically unavoidable in modern, globalised societies. The challenge is how we integrate people into society". Llewellwyn later clarified that he believed that the issues surrounding immigration were more due to assimilating immigrants rather than the number per se.
However since 2016 Llewellwyn has stated he has "listened to the concerns of ordinary people" and has promised to reduce overall immigration numbers.
Llewellwyn has called for same-sex marriage to be legalised through parliament and has criticised the government of Andrew Clarkson for refusing to hold a debate on the subject. Llewellwyn has stated he will "make sure same-sex marriage is legalised within 100 days of government". Llewellwyn later fulfilled his promise following the passage of the Marriage Equality Act of 2018 which legalized same-sex marriage nation-wide in all of Rainier's provinces. The bill saw some bipartisan support with most of the Progressive Conservative Association voting in favor of the bill and even some members of the NUP, but leading members such as Richard Baron voted against it alongside Nicole Faulkner and the Reform Party. Llewellwyn passed other bills and laws throughout 2018 forbidding workplace discrimination and housing discrimination based off of sexual orientation and in March 2018 formally criminalized conversion therapy calling it "a monstrous and primitive that holds no place in modern society" during a speech he gave following the law's enforcement.
Llewellwyn has been criticised for his close relations with Chinese politicians and advocacy of greater Chinese-Rainian cooperation, which many have interpreted as being against Rainian interests. Former party leader and Prime Minister Carwyn Maddock criticised Llewellwyn's support for better relations with China in 1997 following the publication of the policy paperSocial Democracy and Asian Relations in the 21st Century stating that Llewellwyn was undermining national security in his support for Chinese investment into Rainier's nuclear industry as well as abandoning Rainian allies in Asia such as Japan who have voiced concerns over Chinese foreign policy.
Llewellwyn was criticised in 2007 by human rights groups such as Amnesty International when he said it was "pointless" to discuss China's human rights record stating "the Chinese won't change, not when they are the most powerful country on the planet. We need to discuss important issues, like the economy and the environment and counter-terrorism, rather than distractions".