IN the early hours of Friday morning Labour’s Welsh First Minister Mark Drakeford tweeted that Boris Johnson should remember that “the Conservatives are only the largest party in one of the four nations”.

That is true, but if it had been left to the Labour Party it wouldn’t be the case in Wales. As across swathes of the English north, the so-called red wall crumbled in Labour’s Wales. In the north-east Labour lost the Vale of Clwyd, Delyn, Wrexham, and Clwyd South to the Tories.

Labour held on in the southern Valleys, but only because its existing majorities were higher. Its share of the vote went down 16% in Torfaen, 14% in Aberavon, 14% in Islwyn, 14% in Merthyr Tydfil and Rhymney, 13% in Ogmore, 13% in Neath and 12% in Newport East.

Mark Drakeford was able to make his claim because, although his red wall crumbled, Plaid Cymru’s green dam stood strong. While Labour’s vote share collapsed across Wales, Plaid’s stood firm, and indeed actually increased.

In Arfon, Plaid’s Hywel Williams increased his majority from 92 last time to 2781, a 4% increase in vote share. In 2017 in Ceredigion, Plaid’s Ben Lake won the seat from the Liberal Democrats with a majority of just 104. But this time he held the seat with a 6329 majority. Of course, our challenge in the coming year, leading to the 2021 National Assembly election, is to extend that green dam to Offa’s Dyke.

And the General Election has just made that task easier. For it has shattered the myth that voting Labour can protect Wales from the Tories. This has made it never more vital for Plaid Cymru to take over the Welsh Government in 2021. The Labour Welsh Government is part of the problem, not part of the solution.

The small ‘c’ conservative Government in Cardiff is no better than the big ‘C’ one in London. The poverty of Labour’s ambitions for Wales were laid bare in their 2019 General Election manifesto. Conscious of the SNP threat they promised an extra £100 billion investment for Scotland. But they were silent on what they would do for the Welsh people.

And during one of the TV leaders hustings I called out Labour’s shadow justice secretary Richard Burgon. I told him that I agreed with his manifesto commitment to integrate health and social care to meet the needs of sick, disabled and elderly people. But why, I asked, had the Labour Welsh Government failed to do this in Wales when the SNP government had already done so in Scotland? Burgon was stumped.

He just smiled awkwardly. For many viewers in Wales it was a defining moment. And since the election we have had a flood of people joining Plaid, many of them former Labour supporters. As for the Tories, their mantra “to get Brexit done” will soon come back to haunt them.

The National: Adam Price intends to sweep the Welsh Government in 2021Adam Price intends to sweep the Welsh Government in 2021

They will discover that Brexit is not an event, but a process that will continue well beyond January 31. We may formally leave the EU on that date, but we have no idea what kind of long-term trading deal Johnson will then attempt to negotiate with the rest of the EU.

If his existing exit deal is anything to go by, in which he conceded to EU demands for a border down the Irish sea, we will end up with closer alignment with the single market and customs union than many of his backbenches will regard as tolerable.

That will reopen the Tory Brexit civil war. Meanwhile, people in England will discover the hard way that no kind of exit is better for them economically than simply remaining inside the EU. It is a message that has already dawned on most of the people of Northern Ireland and Scotland.

And that is why over the next few years we will be move inexorably towards Irish reunification and a second, this time successful, referendum on Scottish independence. And Wales? We in Plaid Cymru are busy building our green dam to keep the Tories out.

Behind it we are building a coalition that will sweep us into government in 2021. Then we will follow our Scottish friends to make the case for independence for Wales inside the European Union.

READ MORE: Could an independent Scotland join the EU after Brexit?