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Thread: This fuss with the two Neils (Hamilton and McEvoy) has gotten me all confused this weekend as it just made no sense. So, with @neiljmcevoy helpfully releasing a few emails tonight, lets see what we can work out by looking at what's in them and in the public record.
It started with this tweet from @NeilUKIP on Friday night. Even without context, clearly an attempt to stir things up between McEvoy and Plaid by flat out stating that Plaid decided to support him instead of McEvoy.

McEvoy (I'm going by surnames here, two Neil's confusing!) then pitched in by calling out @RhunapIorwerth as the one who didn't back him. McEvoy later explained he named Rhun as it's the Business Committee who decides, and Rhun is Plaid's rep on BC
So, what happened on Friday? Well first of all, nothing happened on Friday because these decisions were made back in June. Why Hamilton decided to crow about it a month's later is not clear, but all this happened because Brexit Party took over from UKIP as Assembly's 4th party
With BP becoming a party and UKIP losing party status, it meant committee seats had to be re-distrubted. Before the change, UKIP had 5 committee seats whilst McEvoy and a few other ex-UKIPers had one each. McEvoy was on Petitions.
So, what happened when the parties changed? Well, here McEvoy's released emails help. In this undated extract, it's clear that the 4 members of BP get 5 committee seats, and the 4 no-party AM's get one each. There are a few rules as to what committees the seats can be on
On 11th June, the Business Committee tells BP that as they are an official party, they get first pick of the 9 seats. Here's an extract from the minutes (which, contrary to McEvoy's demands for them to be made public, are already public. I assume he meant to ask for transcript)
The BP pick their seats, and actually decide that they don't want the 5th as none of their members want to sit on 2 committees. That leaves 2 seats on Petitions and 1 each on Accounts, Environment and Constitution - 5 seats but only 4 non-party AM (since BP didn't want the seat)
So 2 days later, 13th June, McEvoy and the other 3 are emailed to ask what their preferences are. As there's no decision as to what happens to 5th seat, theyre also asked if they would accept a 2nd seat. McEvoy has released that email here
4 days later, 17th June, McEvoy told them that Petitions was his priority, but that he would be willing to take a 2nd seat on Environment if it was available. He has no interest in any of the others. (We can see this from the email he released today)
So on the 19th June, Business Committee gave McEvoy his first choice, Petitions. It also gave one seat each to the other 3 non-party AM's, presumably the seats they had asked for. This included Hamilton to Environment. Just to make that clear - McEvoy got his first choice spot.
Since none of them chose Constitutional Committee (remember McEvoy said he wasn't interested), it was agreed at the meeting the following week (25th) that the Constitutional Committee would shrink by 1 member.
So there you go. There's no story. McEvoy, Hamilton, Bennett + Brown all got to choose their committee and they all got what they wanted. There was 1 seat left as BP didn't want it, but it was on Constitution Committee and McEvoy didn't want that so it was left empty.
DId @neiljmcevoy know the story was nonsense from the start? I don't know, to be fair he may have just seen @NeilUKIP 's tweet, got angry, and dived in without checking the facts. If so, an apology to @RhunapIorwerth and accepting he was mistaken would be the right response.
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