LAST week's vote by AMs to demand the release of an inquiry report into the alleged leaking of news of Carl Sargeant's sacking is a significant moment for more reasons than one.

Rightly or not, Carwyn Jones has borne the brunt of the blame for the circumstances leading up to the north Wales AM's sacking as communities and children secretary in November and death four days later, and his actions in the weeks following have been scrutinised closer than probably any other in his entire political career.

Just a few short weeks after Mr Sargeant's death, fellow Labour AMs rallied around the first minister and blocked calls for him to face a special scrutiny meeting into allegations of bullying in his cabinet which had arisen since the ex-minister was found dead.

But last week they seemed less inclined to get behind their leader, with every single Labour AM abstaining in the vote on the release of the report, allowing the Conservatives, Plaid and Ukip to push it through.

The fact that the first minister was away on a trade visit to America and Canada at the time may have made it slightly easier for some of his party colleagues, along with non-Labour cabinet members Kirsty Williams and Dafydd Elis-Thomas, not to stick their heads above the parapet, but it hardly shows a great deal of loyalty.

I wouldn't go so far as to say they stabbed him the back - none of them voted for the release of the report, after all - but it does show a turnaround in attitudes over a few short months.

Is the presence of Mr Sargeant's son Jack, who was elected to succeed his father as Alyn and Deeside AM last month, causing Labour AMs to think about the real human cost of the whole affair?

The memory of Carl Sargeant has been a constant spectre in the Assembly since he died, but the presence of his son makes this far more real.

How will this play out in the weeks and months to come? We shall see.

And there's another important implication of the vote.

While AMs have voted to demand the inquiry report be released, allowing for redactions to protect the identities of people involved, the Welsh Government is under no legal obligation to actually do so.

So it's possible the first minister's office could simply ignore the vote and carry on regardless.

That would be in line with the line it's taken since Mr Sargeant's death, with the first minister's office repeatedly saying it won't take any action which could impact on the other inquiry looking into the circumstances around the ex-AM's death, which is currently in process, or the inquest, which has not yet been held.

But this would have very serious implications for Welsh democracy. We elect our AMs to represent us, and accordingly their votes are our votes.

By ignoring last week's motion the Welsh Government would be ignoring the Welsh public.

That would be a very dangerous path to go down for a first minister already fending off calls to resign.

A loophole may be that the motion passed last week didn't demand the report is released within a specific timeframe, not even "as soon as possible".

So the Welsh Government could wait until all the inquiries are finished and Mr Sargeant's inquest is done and dusted, maybe even until Carwyn Jones' premiership is a distant memory, before releasing the report and proudly proclaiming it's listened to the will of the people.

But surely no one would be fooled by this.

Needless to say, this is a story which isn't going away in a hurry.