13/03/2017 Daily Politics


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13/03/2017

Jo Coburn is joined by former international development secretary Andrew Mitchell and former shadow health secretary Heidi Alexander to discuss the latest on Brexit.


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Hello and welcome to the Daily Politics.

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In the last few minutes, Scotland's First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has

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confirmed she will seek approval from the Scottish Parliament for

:00:49.:00:50.

Meanwhile, the Brexit Bill is back in the Commons and looks set to gain

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Parliamentary assent by the end of the day.

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The Prime Minister will then have the green light to begin

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As we celebrate Commonwealth Day, we debate whether Brexit will mean

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the rebirth of the Commonwealth and be a new era of trade

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And should the crown skip a generation?

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The journalist and writer Geoffrey Wheatcroft tells us why

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he thinks the next king should be William.

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God Save The Queen. God bless the Prince Of Wales. And long live King

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William V. And with us for the whole programme

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today, the former Secretary Of State For International

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Development Andrew Mitchell. And the former Shadow Health

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Secretary Heidi Alexander. First, today, some breaking news

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in the last few minutes. Scotland's First Minister

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Nicola Sturgeon says she will seek approval next week

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from the Scottish Parliament for Ms Sturgeon said she wanted a vote

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to be held between the autumn of 2018 and the spring

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of the following year. I know that there are some who want

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me to roll out a referendum completely, or delay the decision

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until much, much further down the line.

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I understand why some take that view and, of course, these views do weigh

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heavily on me. But so does this. And this for me is

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a key consideration. If I ruled out in referendum, I

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would be deciding completely unilaterally that Scotland would

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follow the UK to a hard Brexit come what may, no matter how damaging to

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our economy and our society it turns out to be.

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That should not be the decision of just one politician.

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Not even the First Minister. By taking the steps I have set out

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today, I am ensuring that the Scotland's future will be decided

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not just by me, the Scottish Government or the SNP, it will be

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decided by the people of Scotland. It will be Scotland's choice.

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And I trust the people to make that choice.

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The First Minister Niklas Ajo. What is your reaction?

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She can't really not do that. I very much if Scotland votes again it all

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vote to remain part of this union. It seems very much in Scotland's and

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England's interest, and I think since the last referendum, opinion

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has moved more strongly towards the union and I think some of the events

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in the European Union has suggested to people in Scotland there is merit

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in this ancient union with England. I hope it will survive. What

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evidence is there for the fact more people have moved in favour of the

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union as opposed to supporting independence on the basis more

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people voted to Remain in the European referendum Bantu Leave?

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The European referendum, that has led to a greater degree of

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understanding about what leaving the union means. If you look at the

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surveys which have taken place in Scotland in the last year, the merit

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of this union with England is more strongly seen.

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The Ipsos MORI poll published last week for STV found Scots are split

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50-50. Can you be supported it will be in favour of the union?

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It is the triggering of Article 50, and the stark realisation of what is

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now going to happen which may have increased temporarily support for

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splitting. But in the longer term if you look at the other surveys, it is

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more likely than it was before Scotland will vote to remain.

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Do you agree? I think the First Minister is wrong

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to issue ultimatums at the Moto -- the moment. She is right to

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highlight the problems of leaving the single market but in a period of

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economic stability, I do not think another referendum in Scotland is

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what the country needs. If you look at opinion polls out this morning,

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there are more people who are against a Scottish referendum a

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second time than for it. She would do well to get back to the day job

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of looking after the things that she is responsible for in Scotland.

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We will talk hopefully to someone from the SNP. Did you agree with

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Jeremy Corbyn a second referendum on Scottish independence would be fine?

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The Labour Party is clear we will vote against a second referendum in

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the Scottish Parliament. And so there is a question about

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what happens going forward, should legislation come forward in the

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British Parliament? But I think in terms of the vote in Scotland, we

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would be opposing the second referendum, a position we have made

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clear. Should Westminster block an attempt

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to hold a second independence referendum, Theresa May would have

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two Sachin the idea in the face of the Scottish Ponte voting for it as

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well Kopczak would have two sanctions the idea in the face of

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the Scottish Parliament. I do not think Westminster should

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stand in the way. We have to wait to see what happens. I do not think

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Westminster can stand in the way if Scotland wants another referendum

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and democratically decide that is what they want. It would be wrong

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for Westminster not to agree. Which is what Jeremy Corbyn said.

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His point is we do not want to be fuelling grievances.

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Were there to be a vote in the Scottish Parliament, the British

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Parliament Stott there is going to buy the sound of it.

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There would need to be a range of items, the date, the franchise,

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questions to which we do not have answers.

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On the issue Brexit, timing is crucial, one thing Theresa May will

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not want is for a second independence referendum to take

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place in autumn of 2018 or at any point ahead of a deal having been

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done if there is a deal over Brexit. I don't think there is a logic of

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holding a Scottish referendum until they can see the nature of the deal

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for Britain's exit. She wants to pre-empt a hard Brexit.

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It would not be logical until she can see what the cards are on the

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table. Until the gauche Asians are concluded with the EU, she can't do

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that. The Government's new aircraft

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carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth? At the end of the show,

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Andrew Mitchell and Heidi Alexander Now, the Brexit Bill is back

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in front of MPs today, for the first time since the Government

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was defeated twice in the House The bill could pass its final

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Parliamentary hurdles by the end of the day,

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leaving the way clear for Prime Minister Theresa May

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to trigger Article 50, and so start formal negotiations

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for leaving the EU, later this week. Secretary Of State For Exiting

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The EU David Davis is expected to stand up at around 3.30pm

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in the Commons to kick off the debate on the EU

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Notification Of Withdrawal Bill, or Brexit Bill as it is

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more commonly known. Up for discussion is whether to keep

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two amendments passed One to guarantee the rights of EU

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nationals living in the UK. And one to give Parliament

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a "meaningful" vote But the Government is expected

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to have a majority to remove these amendments from the Brexit Bill

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when MPs vote between six The bill then returns

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to the House Of Lords again, with peers expected to start

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their debate at around 8.30pm. Should MPs, as expected,

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remove the Lords' amendments, peers could take this opportunity

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to reinstate their amendments, although Labour Leader

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of the Lords Baroness Smith has said Either way, we will know the result

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of that debate at around 10.15pm. If the Lords vote to reinstate

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the amendments, the bill will once again return to the Commons,

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and could then "ping-pong" between both Houses

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throughout the night But if the Lords decide

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not to block the bill then it will go for Royal Assent,

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paving the way for Theresa May to trigger Article 50,

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the formal process for the UK Our correspondent Ben Wright

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is outside Parliament, Let us assume it is passed, and

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Theresa May decides to trigger Article 50 this week or next, what

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happens after that? The Parliamentary process is

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comparatively simple compared to how Article 50 then we'll proceed.

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What will happen first is that Theresa May will write to the

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president of the European Council Donald Tusk, the body that

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represents EU heads of Government and state, informing her Britain

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wants to leave the EU, a letter that has never been written before,

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triggering Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty that has never been used

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before. Then the European Commission which has already been thinking

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about the sorts of things it will be prepared to negotiate, will write to

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the European Council, the 27 Member states, saying these are the things

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we want to negotiate, do you give approval to negotiate on your behalf

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with the UK? There will be a discussion over

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several days. And then a summit in Brussels of the remaining 27 EU

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countries where they will agree what that negotiating mandate will be and

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give the European Commission the green light to go ahead and set

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round a table with the UK. That summit could happen as early as

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April the 6th, or early May. We expect a lull after Article 50 is

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first triggered, then talks finally beginning with in about six or seven

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weeks. We know negotiations couldn't start

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until the formal Article 50 bill was trickled, but we do have a sense

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already of what Michel Barnier the chief negotiator is wanting in terms

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of how these negotiations should progress -- Bill was triggered.

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He wants to hammer out the divorce part of these talks before there is

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proper discussion on the future relationship. The trade deal. What

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is not helpful if the wording of Article 50, it isn't very extensive,

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only 206 words, five short paragraphs, it says a withdrawal

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agreement needs to be figured out taking into account the future shape

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of the relationship between the EU and departing state. The UK will go

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into these talks, and we have two discuss this in its totality, money

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we still owe to the EU, the rights of EU and UK citizens, the shape of

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future trade relations. The European Commission may want to do the

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divorce first and talk about the future relationship. Once Article 50

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has been triggered, that ball is in the EU's court, they set the

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negotiating mandate. What about the European Parliament?

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The meaningful vote amendment has been debated in the past in the

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House Of Lords, and again in the House Of Commons. There is a

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meaningful vote for the European Parliament.

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You are right, this is a part of an overlooked. The European Parliament

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will have a massive role, Article 50 gives a two year window for the

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withdrawal agreement to be approved, it might happen before.

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The European Parliament has a man who will liaise between the

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Parliament, and commission and Council, who talked about the idea

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of giving UK citizens some right to have some benefits of EU membership.

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He is not in negotiator but will be on the periphery of discussions. At

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the end of the process, once there is a draft deal, before the European

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Council, EU leaders, have their final vote on whether to accept, the

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European Parliament will have a vote also and they have a veto, they

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could decide we don't want any of this, we want to throw it out. A

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very important role at the end of all of this.

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Andrew Mitchell, coming back to here in the Commons, do you expect David

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Davies to offer assurances to rebel MPs and peers to head off any

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discontent? I do but I expect him to stand firm

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on rejecting these amendments from the House Of Lords and leaving the

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bill as it is. I think that he has earned the right to do that he has

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explained why on both issues what some of the rebels and supporters of

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the amendments fear, is not an issue which should bother them further.

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I expect Parliament to reject the Lords's amendments and with the

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balance between both houses on what has been said about our unwritten

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cost you should, I expect the House Of Lords to accept it.

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Will you be reassured by words from David Davies you should not be

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worried about the rights of EU nationals, it will be dealt with

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quickly and that there will be a vote for Parliament to mark I will

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vote to retain the amendments the House Of Lords have put in for the

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rights of the 3 million EU nationals to remain in the UK, and for that to

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be unilaterally decided before the negotiations start, and for this

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meaningful vote at the end of the process.

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I do not think Parliament should be left with a Hobbs and choice at the

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end of the negotiating period, that you take the terms of the deal or

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you fall out of the EU and have two rely on WTO trading terms because I

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think that would do enormous damage to the British economy. It is vital

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Parliament and not just Theresa May in Downing Street, has a genuine say

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on this at the end of the period. What is the point of just having

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about at the end that either is to come out with nothing or accept the

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deal however bad or good it is? Verse double there is no chance deal

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won't be cut between the EU and Britain about EU nationals here and

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British nationals in the European Union. So why not do it now? You

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don't concede a negotiation before negotiations have started but we all

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know what the reality is, there is no threat to EU nationals in Britain

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or British nationals in the European Union. On the second point, I'm a

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former Government whip, there are numerous ways in which Parliament

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can challenge the executive, whether or not... But not on those issues.

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Whether or not on the face of the builder is a meaningful vote, there

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will be several meaningful votes the Government needs to win in

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Parliament so I have no fear about that amendment being revoked this

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afternoon because Parliament have the power to put down motions, the

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opposition have the power to put down motions, and they can do so at

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any time and the Government will have to win them. Could we be in a

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situation where EU nationals could be deported if the negotiations

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don't quite go the way the Government would like? I don't know,

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nobody knows. The EU citizen that come to my advice surgeries in tears

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about the uncertainty that this has caused for them and their families,

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it is all very well for Andrew to sit here and said there is no

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conceivable way in which those people would be allowed to stay, but

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I know that EU citizens are very fearful at the moment and I think

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providing them with a guarantee at this stage is a reasonable and

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humane thing to do. You set out the arguments for and against but in

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reality the Government is going to win, it will be able to remove those

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amendments because the numbers do not add up, unless you know of about

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26 Conservative rebels that will join your side. Let's see what

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happens, Conservative MPs can just sit on their hands. They could

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abstain. Nobody knows what is going to happen. Are you worried about the

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number of colleagues on your side that could decide to abstain, which

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would mean, in effect, that those amendments remain in the bill? I am

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pretty confident that those amendments will not stay in the

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bill. I think David Davis has, in a very persuasive way, managed to

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persuade virtually all of my colleagues have the merit of the

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Government's case and I would expect the Government to win comfortably

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this afternoon. One other important point about what happened in the

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event of a deal not being reached, if you listen to Conservative MPs

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such as Nicky Morgan, and a super, Dominic Grieve, who have pointed out

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that it is imperative that Parliament, should a deal not be

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reached, have a say about what happens then with respect to the

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country going forward, and I find it inconceivable that Parliament

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wouldn't be involved at that stage. Anna Sue Brie has said that will

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stop let's say in six to 12 months negotiations are going badly and the

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Government decides to cut its losses and come out of the EU without a

:19:32.:19:36.

deal, World Trade Organisation rules, should there be a vote at

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that point to decide what happens next or would there be a general

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election? There would be a vote in Parliament because the opposition

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would put down a motion. You know there are differences in the

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thoughts of votes that take place in Parliament, there are binding vote

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put forward by the Government and there are also votes that the

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opposition can seek to have. If you are so sure Parliament will have a

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say at the end of this process, and meaningful say, I don't understand

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why it can't be on the face of the bill today. Because the bill has

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been produced by the Government and the Bill is only there to Greg

:20:12.:20:16.

Article 50, it is not getting into these subclauses. We all know

:20:17.:20:21.

Parliament, when negotiations are done, faces down the executive and

:20:22.:20:26.

says the deal, as it is set, is not acceptable, that would be a serious

:20:27.:20:30.

moment. When Parliament have a vote on this it will be meaningful.

:20:31.:20:35.

Jeremy Corbyn and the Labour Party, should day-to-day be making speeches

:20:36.:20:38.

and debating on the merits of keeping those amendments within the

:20:39.:20:44.

Bill or will they just go ahead and vote through Article 50? I think

:20:45.:20:49.

Keir Starmer will be making the case for retaining the Lords amendments

:20:50.:20:53.

today because I think the reassurance they would provide to EU

:20:54.:20:58.

nationals and reassurance to the country in terms of elected

:20:59.:21:01.

representatives being involved at the end of this process is

:21:02.:21:06.

absolutely crucial. In the end, though, we already know from the

:21:07.:21:09.

leaders in the Lords, from Angela Smith, the leader of Labour in the

:21:10.:21:14.

Lords, that they are not going to vote on prolonged ping-pong so

:21:15.:21:18.

Article 50 will pass, probably tonight, if not fairly soon after.

:21:19.:21:22.

Should Article 50 be triggered immediately by the Prime Minister

:21:23.:21:30.

then? I think there is no reason to delay, she has the bill at that

:21:31.:21:33.

point and I would expect her to trigger it at some point in the next

:21:34.:21:36.

few days after that. Or even tomorrow? It could be as soon as

:21:37.:21:39.

tomorrow, she has a statement in the house tomorrow but I would expect

:21:40.:21:42.

her to trigger it when she is armed with the legislation to proceed

:21:43.:21:46.

fairly quickly. Do you agree the Lords will not go for prolonged

:21:47.:21:51.

ping-pong? I think Angela Smith, Labour's leader in the House of

:21:52.:21:54.

Lords, has said they will not drag out the process. I voted against the

:21:55.:21:59.

Article 50 bill, even I don't think there is merit in just read running

:22:00.:22:04.

the same argument to get the same outcome, so I don't think that we

:22:05.:22:06.

will see protracted ping-pong, but that is not to say I

:22:07.:22:24.

am happy with the Bill. There is speculation about whether the UK

:22:25.:22:27.

will get a good enough deal and Theresa May will accept, how likely

:22:28.:22:29.

do you think that is in terms of statistics, more likely we will get

:22:30.:22:32.

a good deal or we will come out and rely on WTO rules? I think we will

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get a good deal, and a good deal is one both sides are happy with. In

:22:36.:22:38.

Theresa May and David Davis you have got the best possible team to

:22:39.:22:40.

negotiate this for Britain and I'm very confident that once

:22:41.:22:43.

negotiations are ongoing a sensible, mutually advantageous deal will be

:22:44.:22:47.

done. Boris Johnson said no deal would be perfectly OK at the

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weekend, do you agree? It would be the second of my options... It would

:22:54.:22:58.

be, by dint of logic! I think there will be a deal, but the Government

:22:59.:23:02.

would be ill-advised not to plan for there not being a deal because that

:23:03.:23:07.

is part of the various scenarios that the Government must face. Are

:23:08.:23:10.

you worried that has not been enough contingency? No, David Davis said

:23:11.:23:15.

Whitehall is well abreast of the legalities. The Foreign Affairs

:23:16.:23:18.

Committee did not seem to agree. Are you being overly pessimistic? It is

:23:19.:23:23.

likely a reasonable deal will be struck between the two sides. I wish

:23:24.:23:29.

I had Andrew's optimism about this, to be honest. If you look at what

:23:30.:23:33.

Liam Fox, Boris Johnson and David Davis were saying yesterday on

:23:34.:23:37.

television, one was saying it would be fine, as you said, Jo, to fall

:23:38.:23:43.

out on WTO terms, Liam Fox was saying it would be a bad thing. I

:23:44.:23:47.

think the Government are all over the place on this and I'm really

:23:48.:23:52.

worried about what the outcome of these negotiations will be in terms

:23:53.:23:56.

of the future prosperity of our country and the jobs and trade,

:23:57.:24:02.

investment that people depend upon. I want to reassure Heidi that

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negotiations are being done by Theresa May and David Davis, they

:24:08.:24:12.

are in the lead and they... The other two are involved? They are a

:24:13.:24:16.

superb team. The former Lords Speaker has

:24:17.:24:18.

admitted she abandoned an investigation into peers

:24:19.:24:21.

who enjoy House Of Lords perks without doing any work,

:24:22.:24:24.

for fear of causing what she called Baroness D'Souza was investigating

:24:25.:24:26.

which peers clocked in to claim their ?300 daily allowance

:24:27.:24:29.

without making a contribution However, she then dropped the probe

:24:30.:24:31.

for fear of having to name and shame She makes the claim in the final

:24:32.:24:35.

episode of The Lords, What I wanted to find

:24:36.:24:39.

out in the research that I did a few months

:24:40.:24:49.

ago who was attending, And you know it is very

:24:50.:24:52.

difficult to quantify. There are some who make no

:24:53.:24:55.

contribution whatsoever and nevertheless claim

:24:56.:24:58.

the full amount. This is not a daycare

:24:59.:25:01.

centre or a club. It is actually a House,

:25:02.:25:09.

a legislative House. And I do firmly believe

:25:10.:25:12.

that the people who attend ought to be in a position to be

:25:13.:25:14.

able to contribute. I abandoned this research because it

:25:15.:25:18.

would have involved a degree of naming and shaming

:25:19.:25:22.

which I certainly But also that would in turn have

:25:23.:25:23.

provoked some kind of a press storm I mean, the reputation of the House

:25:24.:25:31.

is not that great anyhow. Well, we did ask Baroness D'Souza if

:25:32.:25:38.

she would like to do an interview, But we have our two guests here.

:25:39.:25:50.

Heidi Alexander, what do you make of the fact she was carrying out her

:25:51.:25:54.

own piece of research into Lords claiming the daily allowance and

:25:55.:25:57.

whether they were doing the Brexit were? I don't know whether this

:25:58.:26:02.

so-called investigation was actually a formal inquiry on the part of the

:26:03.:26:06.

Lords, it seems to me it was more a personal research project. I think

:26:07.:26:12.

that all representatives, whether in the House of Commons or the House of

:26:13.:26:17.

Lords, should always think very, very carefully before claiming

:26:18.:26:22.

expenses. I think we all have a responsibility to be getting value

:26:23.:26:26.

for money for the taxpayer, I'd also say, though, I do think the vast

:26:27.:26:31.

majority of people, perhaps not the vast majority, but the majority in

:26:32.:26:35.

the House of Lords are doing is really important work. If you think

:26:36.:26:39.

about the work on child refugees by Lord Dubs, they can make a great

:26:40.:26:43.

contribution to the legislative... But what about those who are not

:26:44.:26:49.

doing that, Andrew Mitchell? Would it have been useful and pertinent to

:26:50.:26:52.

know who was not actually contributing the work but still

:26:53.:26:55.

claiming allowances? I completely agree with what Heidi said, and I

:26:56.:27:01.

would make two points on Baroness d'Souza's report. The first issue

:27:02.:27:04.

will have had to look at voting records to see whether on the day

:27:05.:27:08.

peers were there they were voting, but that is not the only word Lords

:27:09.:27:13.

do, they do all sorts of things around the Lords on committees,

:27:14.:27:15.

formal as well as informal committees, so her research may have

:27:16.:27:20.

been flawed. The other point I would make it as the former Speaker if she

:27:21.:27:23.

thought some peers were not behaving as they stood in respect of public

:27:24.:27:27.

money then she should have used her good offices to go to them and stop

:27:28.:27:31.

them from doing it. She said she did not want your name and send them and

:27:32.:27:35.

cause a press conference by discussing it she has done that, in

:27:36.:27:40.

essence? I think that if you are going to make these sorts of

:27:41.:27:45.

allegations, it needs to be a formal inquiry, there needs to be proper,

:27:46.:27:51.

comprehensive research done, I'm not an expert on Lords procedure but I

:27:52.:27:55.

would have thought that if there was a genuine, real problem there the

:27:56.:27:59.

laws themselves would want to investigated thoroughly and not a

:28:00.:28:03.

partial piece of personal research, and I'm not clear how comprehensive

:28:04.:28:07.

this work was. You admitted it has caused a press storm anyway to a

:28:08.:28:12.

certain extent, will it hasten the call for reform again? I think there

:28:13.:28:16.

will be more reform of the Lords, the Lords themselves are looking at

:28:17.:28:20.

it, and I have great confidence in the new Lord Speaker, who I think is

:28:21.:28:26.

an enormously experienced parliamentarian, and I think you can

:28:27.:28:29.

be relied upon to be sensible about reform. But I think what you have

:28:30.:28:33.

got here is a story without evidence, which of course the press

:28:34.:28:37.

love but I'm not sure it advances the knowledge. Brexit might push the

:28:38.:28:42.

issue down to the bottom of the agenda with regards House of Lords

:28:43.:28:48.

reform. It is a problem for the day-to-day business of Government.

:28:49.:28:51.

The point I would beg on the House of Lords, there is a case for making

:28:52.:28:56.

the House of Lords smaller. David Cameron in the last parliament was

:28:57.:29:00.

actually increasing the number of peers on those benches, so I would

:29:01.:29:06.

be up for looking at reducing the number of peers in the Lords. It

:29:07.:29:09.

certainly is fall in there if everybody turns up.

:29:10.:29:11.

We're expecting a busy week here in Westminster,

:29:12.:29:13.

and further afield, let's take a look at what's coming up.

:29:14.:29:15.

As we discussed earlier, the EU Withdrawal Bill will be back

:29:16.:29:18.

MPs will vote on two amendments that were put in by the Lords.

:29:19.:29:24.

And the bill could then get final approval from

:29:25.:29:26.

Tomorrow, Theresa May will make a statement telling

:29:27.:29:33.

Parliament about the EU summit in Brussels last week.

:29:34.:29:35.

Some of the papers have been speculating that she could trigger

:29:36.:29:38.

Article 50 on Tuesday, but others think later

:29:39.:29:41.

On Wednesday, Jeremy Corbyn will face Theresa May for PMQs.

:29:42.:29:47.

As ever, we'll broadcast the session live and in full

:29:48.:29:49.

Also on Wednesday, there's a general election in the Netherlands.

:29:50.:29:54.

All eyes will be on Geert Wilders - it's thought that his

:29:55.:29:56.

Party For Freedom will significantly boost their number of seats.

:29:57.:30:00.

Sticking with foreign affairs, we'll get an outline

:30:01.:30:03.

of Donald Trump's budget plans on Thursday, although the full

:30:04.:30:06.

details of his tax and spending plans aren't expected for another

:30:07.:30:09.

And on Friday, Nicola Sturgeon will address the SNP

:30:10.:30:12.

The First Minister will be able to tell the party

:30:13.:30:18.

faithful why she now wants a second independence referendum.

:30:19.:30:29.

We're joined by Kevin Schofield from Politics Home and Alison Little of

:30:30.:30:32.

the Daily Express. Kevin, give us your reaction to what

:30:33.:30:40.

Nicola Sturgeon said about seeking approval for the second independence

:30:41.:30:44.

referendum? It is not much of a surprise, she has been threatening

:30:45.:30:48.

it, talking about it being highly likely, very likely, ever since the

:30:49.:30:52.

Brexit vote, so now has been the time for her to put her cards on the

:30:53.:30:56.

table and to her credit she has done that this morning, the ball is

:30:57.:31:00.

firmly in the Prime Minister's court. Has she been forced, if you

:31:01.:31:05.

like, to announce the date, obviously it was in their manifesto,

:31:06.:31:10.

something she has talked about doing if certain conditions were not met

:31:11.:31:14.

by Theresa May, is it something she really wanted to announce today,

:31:15.:31:19.

though? I think she said before that she wouldn't call another referendum

:31:20.:31:25.

unless there had been a sustained poll lead for independence, clearly

:31:26.:31:29.

that has not been the case, I think another poll out today shows a

:31:30.:31:34.

slight advantage to the pro union side, so in a way she has been

:31:35.:31:37.

backed into a corner, she has a lot of members who joined in the wake of

:31:38.:31:41.

the last referendum who are desperate to have a second one so

:31:42.:31:44.

she has to try to keep them on board and the Brexit vote has provided an

:31:45.:31:48.

opportunity to give them what they want. Addison, she has done it of

:31:49.:31:54.

course before Theresa May has the opportunity to trigger Article 50

:31:55.:31:57.

but that will happen soon. Should she go ahead or block any second

:31:58.:32:00.

independence referendum? Theresa May has made a very big

:32:01.:32:12.

thing of respecting Scotland and devolved assemblies, Nicola Sturgeon

:32:13.:32:16.

has made great play of the fact Scotland has been ignored by the

:32:17.:32:18.

Government. If Theresa May ordered Westminster

:32:19.:32:26.

to block another referendum if that was overwhelmingly backed by the

:32:27.:32:29.

Scottish Parliament, I think that wouldn't help relations. It would

:32:30.:32:35.

play into Nicola Sturgeon's hands. It is very dangerous as we know, a

:32:36.:32:43.

very dangerous time for the UK. She has announced this today Nicola

:32:44.:32:47.

Sturgeon. When do you think Theresa May will trigger Article 50 if it

:32:48.:32:52.

gets Royal assent later? As Liam Fox said, it will be this

:32:53.:32:59.

week, next week or the week after! Her self-imposed deadline and

:33:00.:33:03.

Downing Street is sticking to this. It is a big moment. The invoking of

:33:04.:33:09.

Article 50. It is the last really big, clear thing that will happen

:33:10.:33:13.

with Brexit for a couple of years at least. If I were Theresa May I would

:33:14.:33:17.

want to make sure that I completely chose the venue and the timing,

:33:18.:33:22.

there is talk whether she might mention it in the House Of Commons

:33:23.:33:27.

tomorrow. The problem that is, it is a bear pit full of people who hate

:33:28.:33:31.

the idea of Brexit. She would have to take questions. She is very good

:33:32.:33:36.

at giving preprepared statements which set the right tone. When she

:33:37.:33:42.

answers questions, sometimes she can muddy the clarity of that message.

:33:43.:33:47.

She may well do it tomorrow. What do you think if you were a betting man?

:33:48.:33:52.

Or will she avoid the bearpit of the House Of Commons and do it somewhere

:33:53.:33:56.

else? She can't avoid that bearpit, she is

:33:57.:34:00.

making that statement. I would be surprised if it wasn't Wednesday by

:34:01.:34:06.

the latest. She now wants it to happen. It is entirely in her gift.

:34:07.:34:11.

It is significant the statement tomorrow is a little bit later than

:34:12.:34:17.

we would otherwise have expected, at 3:30pm, Parliament sits tomorrow

:34:18.:34:22.

morning. That would give her enough time to trigger Article 50, come

:34:23.:34:25.

into Parliament and take as many questions as she can.

:34:26.:34:30.

Let us talk about Labour spending, there has been a contradiction,

:34:31.:34:35.

Jeremy Corbyn disputing to some extent his own Shadow Cabinet Member

:34:36.:34:40.

Rebecca Long-Bailey who talked about reversing tax cuts by the Government

:34:41.:34:45.

to raise ?70 billion but would then be put to public spending.

:34:46.:34:53.

Tell us the significance? It is significant, if I had ?1 for

:34:54.:35:02.

every story over Labour confusion, I would have ?14?

:35:03.:35:06.

It happens quite a lot. There is definite confusion, Jeremy Corbyn on

:35:07.:35:10.

the radio today saying he did not recognise this ?60 billion figure

:35:11.:35:14.

despite the fact Rebecca Long-Bailey tipped by many to be the next Labour

:35:15.:35:19.

leader saying those figures were broadly accurate.

:35:20.:35:22.

The problem Labour has is people are not taking them seriously especially

:35:23.:35:28.

over the economy. People look at the opinion polls and see they have a

:35:29.:35:33.

mountain to climb and they are not well placed at the moment unless

:35:34.:35:38.

there is a dramatic change in public opinion, to be a Government in

:35:39.:35:42.

waiting. All these browsers seem to confirm

:35:43.:35:47.

that idea the voters have, that Labour are in a real mess.

:35:48.:35:51.

Thank you to both of you, enjoy the sunshine.

:35:52.:35:56.

Back to that breaking News, the First Minister of Scotland Nicola

:35:57.:36:00.

Sturgeon has announced she will seek approval for a second independence

:36:01.:36:04.

referendum. Let us talk to the SNP Europe spokesman Stephen Gethin

:36:05.:36:09.

welcome back to the Daily Politics. Why did she make the announcement

:36:10.:36:13.

today? It is important people in Scotland

:36:14.:36:17.

are given a choice McGivern Article 50 looks increasingly likely it is

:36:18.:36:23.

going to be triggered, I think the people of Scotland need to know

:36:24.:36:29.

their options and make a choice of their futures, isolationist future

:36:30.:36:34.

with the UK, or is it securing a relationship with our partners in

:36:35.:36:38.

Europe? She hasn't trickled Article 50, it

:36:39.:36:42.

is still being debated in the Commons, we will go back to the

:36:43.:36:47.

Lords later this evening. Isn't this rather presumptive? Wait

:36:48.:36:51.

a minute. We have had several months, nine months on from the

:36:52.:36:55.

European referendum, we are several months on from when the Scottish

:36:56.:36:59.

Government came forward with a compromise document. In that time

:37:00.:37:03.

the promised has rejected the single market which could cause the

:37:04.:37:16.

loss of tens of thousands of Scottish jobs, rejected the customs

:37:17.:37:19.

union, we are looking at an increasingly hard Tory Brexit. It is

:37:20.:37:22.

right the First Minister has taken the opportunity to set out the

:37:23.:37:24.

options the people of Scotland now have.

:37:25.:37:25.

Negotiations have even started, we don't know whether there will be a

:37:26.:37:28.

hard Tory Brexit as you call it, a deal has not been put either to

:37:29.:37:34.

other parts of Parliament. Having already in website running by

:37:35.:37:42.

the SNP, it all smacks like you have had this long prepared and this is

:37:43.:37:46.

the moment you have been waiting for, the excuse to launch the

:37:47.:37:51.

process for a referendum, otherwise why you -- Why do you have a website

:37:52.:37:56.

ready to go. We have had nine months from the

:37:57.:38:02.

23rd of June referendum. During those months, we are seeing a huge

:38:03.:38:08.

amount of uncertainty the business, for universities, we have seen the

:38:09.:38:10.

only substantial piece of work from the Government is the Scottish

:38:11.:38:15.

Government zest compromise undermined by the UK government. It

:38:16.:38:20.

is right the First Minister sets out the options for the people of

:38:21.:38:22.

Scotland. What evidence do you have a majority

:38:23.:38:27.

in Scotland would vote for independence?

:38:28.:38:32.

We have seen the most recent opinion polls showing 50-50.

:38:33.:38:38.

One poll has said that. You have had the average of three

:38:39.:38:42.

polls over the past weeks. We also in a situation, bear in

:38:43.:38:47.

mind, the independence referendum previously when it started off at

:38:48.:38:54.

27%. If you put polls to one side, the people of Scotland voted

:38:55.:38:56.

overwhelmingly to remain part of the EU. They are being taken out against

:38:57.:39:04.

their will. That could cost tens of thousands of jobs. The Scottish

:39:05.:39:07.

Government has a responsibility to do everything in its power to

:39:08.:39:12.

protect those jobs, protect our economy and protect our relationship

:39:13.:39:15.

with Europe. In the manifesto, I remember it was

:39:16.:39:20.

done on the promise of a second independence referendum if there

:39:21.:39:22.

were times not in the interests of Scotland and if there was

:39:23.:39:27.

overwhelmingly support for that second referendum. There was that

:39:28.:39:32.

support at the moment. The manifesto says there could be

:39:33.:39:36.

another independence referendum in the circumstances Scotland was taken

:39:37.:39:42.

out of the EU against its will. The SNP was re-elected with an

:39:43.:39:47.

increased vote on that manifesto. They have the mandate, something

:39:48.:39:51.

recognised by other parties as well. On that basis they take it forward.

:39:52.:39:56.

You are right, it is for us to go in and make these arguments but we are

:39:57.:40:00.

in a situation whereby we have a choice and the people of Scotland

:40:01.:40:04.

have a choice between a hard Tory Brexit or protecting jobs by

:40:05.:40:08.

maintaining our relationship with our European partners.

:40:09.:40:12.

We have a Government response, I won't read the whole thing, it says

:40:13.:40:17.

over, only a little over two years ago people in Scotland decisively

:40:18.:40:24.

voted to remain part of the UK which the Scottish Government defined as a

:40:25.:40:28.

once in a generation vote. Evidence shows the majority in Scotland do

:40:29.:40:32.

not want a second independence referendum, another would be

:40:33.:40:36.

divisive and caused huge economic uncertainty at the worst time.

:40:37.:40:40.

Presumably indicating you want it to happen in autumn 2018 when

:40:41.:40:44.

negotiations will be going on for Brexit.

:40:45.:40:46.

Do you accept you did say it would be a once in a generation vote last

:40:47.:40:51.

time? That is why you stand on a

:40:52.:40:54.

manifesto. The Chancellor is in difficulty for failing to live up to

:40:55.:41:00.

the Tory party commitments. You put something in a manifesto and people

:41:01.:41:06.

vote on it. The SNP was voted on its 20 16th manifesto commitment which

:41:07.:41:10.

was very explicit. Government rise and fall in terms of their

:41:11.:41:14.

commitments, something we are finding out after another

:41:15.:41:17.

catastrophic budget here at Westminster. They were very clear

:41:18.:41:22.

about the manifesto, the people of Scotland had a choice and the SNP

:41:23.:41:27.

were re-elected on that basis. When would you like the second

:41:28.:41:31.

independence referendum to be? The First Minister set at a temple

:41:32.:41:37.

-- Set up a timetable. That makes a lot of sense. By that stage we will

:41:38.:41:41.

have a lot more information about what Brexit means. Others are not

:41:42.:41:46.

hopeful about what it means. It gives the people the opportunity to

:41:47.:41:51.

make a more informed choice. Thank you very much.

:41:52.:41:57.

Now, it may not be in your calendar, but today is Commonwealth Day.

:41:58.:42:00.

Marked around the world, the idea is to promote

:42:01.:42:04.

the Commonwealth's "shared values" and to celebrate the diversity

:42:05.:42:06.

of the organisation which has 52 members across six continents.

:42:07.:42:08.

But while the pomp and pageantry is the focus of today,

:42:09.:42:11.

since last year's vote to leave the EU many have been

:42:12.:42:14.

talking about a new era for the Commonwealth club.

:42:15.:42:16.

The Government has talked optimistically about the possibility

:42:17.:42:19.

of striking new trade deals with the likes of Australia

:42:20.:42:22.

and Canada, while last week Commonwealth trade ministers meeting

:42:23.:42:24.

in London agreed to strengthen economic ties between members.

:42:25.:42:26.

So, could these potential trade deals be new economic

:42:27.:42:28.

Or has their importance been exaggerated?

:42:29.:42:38.

We're joined now by the Conservative MP Andrew Rosindell,

:42:39.:42:40.

who has come to the studio direct from a Commonwealth flag-raising

:42:41.:42:43.

And by Tom Brake, Lib Dem spokesman on foreign affairs.

:42:44.:42:52.

I think we know which side both of you are on this argument.

:42:53.:42:59.

Britain has a free trading agreement with the EU where we export 228th

:43:00.:43:05.

Battalion pounds of goods and services. Our export trade with the

:43:06.:43:10.

Commonwealth is worth around ?47 billion. Less than one fifth of

:43:11.:43:15.

that. In a way, new trade deals with the Commonwealth is a side deal

:43:16.:43:18.

compared with getting a trade deal with the EU?

:43:19.:43:23.

The reality is we have so many opportunities to trade with the

:43:24.:43:26.

Commonwealth it is an expanding market for Britain.

:43:27.:43:31.

It would have to expand an awful lot.

:43:32.:43:35.

We have been in the EU for over 40 years, in a straitjacket. By having

:43:36.:43:41.

Brexit, we can do our own trade deals, negotiate independently based

:43:42.:43:46.

on our common heritage, rule of law, common legal system, and the fact we

:43:47.:43:50.

speak the same language. So many opportunities. It's not about not

:43:51.:43:55.

trading with Europe but doing both. We can do both, a trade deal with

:43:56.:44:01.

the EU and deals with India, Australia, which we have been

:44:02.:44:05.

prohibited from because of our membership of the customs you.

:44:06.:44:11.

The EU has just struck a deal with Canada. The issue is, as you stated,

:44:12.:44:17.

the size of what we do with the EU versus the Commonwealth is an issue.

:44:18.:44:21.

And we could do both. Another issue is actually in terms of specialists

:44:22.:44:26.

within the Department for its national trade, there are very few

:44:27.:44:32.

that can deal with these. There are many Commonwealth countries who

:44:33.:44:37.

threw the ACP countries already have a relationship with the EU,

:44:38.:44:41.

countries like Belize, Members of the Commonwealth who are worried the

:44:42.:44:45.

arrangement they have currently with the EU, if that were to be damaged,

:44:46.:44:50.

and they weren't able to draw up a similar arrangement with the UK in

:44:51.:44:55.

future, if the UK was doing a deal with Ecuador, that would wipe out

:44:56.:44:59.

their industry. We have the potential but the Commonwealth is

:45:00.:45:03.

much smaller, and I know from having lived in Australia that Australia is

:45:04.:45:09.

much more focused on the far east in terms of its markets than the UK.

:45:10.:45:15.

There is a point about priorities, surely the UK was very attractive as

:45:16.:45:19.

an open door to the EU that those Commonwealth countries which we will

:45:20.:45:24.

no longer be once we have left. First, the Commonwealth is an

:45:25.:45:29.

expanding market, the EU is a decreasing market.

:45:30.:45:31.

My point is their view of us, they may not view us as appealing if we

:45:32.:45:39.

don't have an open door to the EU. We are going to leave but we will

:45:40.:45:42.

still trade with Europe. But we wouldn't be that open door as

:45:43.:45:48.

part of the EU to other countries. I think we will be, we are a low tax

:45:49.:45:53.

economy, we have a flexible Labour market, we are a chat live for

:45:54.:45:58.

countries to invest. Europe will want to trade with us. It is about

:45:59.:46:02.

doing both. We have neglected the well, we haven't done our own trade

:46:03.:46:08.

deals. Canada, we could have had a deal decades ago but because of the

:46:09.:46:09.

EU we have been prevented. And of course it is these

:46:10.:46:19.

multilateral agreements that are so hard to strike, bilateral may be

:46:20.:46:22.

easier? But of course we may get less than when we get deals from the

:46:23.:46:29.

European Union. With countries like India, for instance, India may want

:46:30.:46:32.

to achieve a bilateral deal with a much greater degree of penetration

:46:33.:46:38.

of the UK market of Indian nationals, for instance, so from an

:46:39.:46:42.

immigration point of view those deals may require the UK to concede

:46:43.:46:46.

more in allowing Indians to come to the EU. But the EU countries demand

:46:47.:46:52.

whatever they want, so instead of doing a British deal with our best

:46:53.:46:58.

friends, we are stuck worrying about what France wants or what Romania

:46:59.:47:02.

wants, or Greece. So we are going to be free and able to do our own

:47:03.:47:07.

thing, trading globally, as we have done throughout our history, a

:47:08.:47:11.

seafaring, free trading nation with our best friends once again. Let's

:47:12.:47:16.

pick up on India, we covered the visit not long ago and it was very

:47:17.:47:20.

clear that any deal from the Indian side would be far more visas, would

:47:21.:47:29.

you accept that? That is the great thing about Brexit, we can make our

:47:30.:47:32.

own immigration policy again. If it is immigration the country needs, I

:47:33.:47:36.

welcome that, but it should be controlled by the British

:47:37.:47:38.

Government, not anybody from Europe and nobody from the Commonwealth,

:47:39.:47:43.

which is what we have at the moment. Clearly the UK needs to attract

:47:44.:47:47.

people with the skills that we need but I think Andrew has just revealed

:47:48.:47:51.

something I suspect not many people who voted for Leave are aware of,

:47:52.:48:02.

which is one of the prices to pay for Brexit might actually be more

:48:03.:48:04.

immigration from India. I can't remember that being a big campaign

:48:05.:48:07.

slogan. I didn't say that at all, we should control who comes in and if

:48:08.:48:10.

there is a skilled person in India why should they not have the same

:48:11.:48:13.

opportunities as a skilled person from Italy? I don't understand why

:48:14.:48:15.

we have a system where the Commonwealth are second best but we

:48:16.:48:19.

only really give total access to Europe. That will change with

:48:20.:48:22.

Brexit, we need to reboot our relationship with the Commonwealth,

:48:23.:48:26.

have a stronger relationship, because historically they are our

:48:27.:48:29.

best friends so why not work more closely with them. What I keep

:48:30.:48:34.

saying is fanciful, I have a large Jamaican population in my

:48:35.:48:37.

constituency, we export more to Lithuania than to Jamaica. I looked

:48:38.:48:43.

on the Department for trade's website this morning about expanding

:48:44.:48:46.

trade with Jamaica, do you know what came upon the website? It said the

:48:47.:48:51.

country guide for Jamaica is currently not available. The

:48:52.:48:54.

Government talk the talk when it comes to expanding trade

:48:55.:48:56.

opportunities but they clearly do not have the capacity to deliver

:48:57.:49:01.

and, as Tom says, we already have trading arrangements with a number

:49:02.:49:07.

of Commonwealth countries so we are just reinventing something we

:49:08.:49:10.

already have. Do you agree, are we prepared to take up the

:49:11.:49:13.

opportunities if they exist with, most countries or is this symbolic?

:49:14.:49:17.

We want to trade with everyone, Andrew was right in what he said,

:49:18.:49:21.

this is an opportunity to greatly expand trade with the Commonwealth

:49:22.:49:25.

but where there are lots of nations growing at the highest rate anywhere

:49:26.:49:29.

in the world, but also to continue to trade, I hope, in a very open

:49:30.:49:34.

way, with the European Union, so it should be a win-win. Thank you both

:49:35.:49:35.

very much. Commonwealth Day seems a good day to

:49:36.:49:43.

talk about the royal succession. Elizabeth II is of course our

:49:44.:49:47.

longest-serving monarch, and attention is inevitably

:49:48.:49:49.

beginning to focus There is a growing number of people

:49:50.:50:00.

who question whether the throne should skip Prince Charles and go

:50:01.:50:04.

straight to his son William. The journalist and monarchist

:50:05.:50:06.

Geoffrey Wheatcroft says Charles has too many controversial views,

:50:07.:50:08.

and the throne needs Beyond most people's

:50:09.:50:10.

retiring age already. His mother, the Queen,

:50:11.:50:25.

is 90, and already our If she lives anything

:50:26.:50:28.

like as long as her own mother, the Prince will be approaching

:50:29.:50:34.

the age of 80 by the time Plenty of people have begun

:50:35.:50:38.

to wonder whether he should or whether the monarchy

:50:39.:50:44.

could survive the reign Criticisms of the Prince

:50:45.:50:46.

of Wales tend to come So, let me just say that the House

:50:47.:50:59.

of Hanover has no more loyal No stronger adherent

:51:00.:51:07.

of the principles of the glorious revolution, the Protestant

:51:08.:51:11.

succession, and the But one essential feature of that

:51:12.:51:13.

constitutional monarchy as it has evolved is that the monarch has

:51:14.:51:24.

what the great Victorian writer Walter Bagehot called

:51:25.:51:29.

the right to be consulted, the right to encourage,

:51:30.:51:30.

and the right to warn. But the monarch does not

:51:31.:51:35.

have the right to express The Queen has famously never

:51:36.:51:37.

said anything in public That is, she never says anything

:51:38.:51:51.

which is the opinion of Her Majesty, as opposed to Her Majesty's

:51:52.:52:00.

Government. Her son the Prince Of Wales just

:52:01.:52:06.

as famously never tires of writing letters to Cabinet ministers giving

:52:07.:52:09.

them advice, and letting the rest of us know what he thinks

:52:10.:52:13.

about every known subject, from genetically modified crops,

:52:14.:52:16.

to grammar schools, It is said that he now

:52:17.:52:20.

hopes to become king, that he very much wants his wife

:52:21.:52:29.

the Duchess of Cornwall And that he intends to go

:52:30.:52:31.

on expanding his own But if that is true,

:52:32.:52:38.

then he has simply failed after all this time to grasp

:52:39.:52:42.

the essential nature The Prince Of Wales

:52:43.:52:45.

is a fundamentally decent and serious man with a strong

:52:46.:52:54.

sense of duty. Mightn't he express his duty best

:52:55.:53:11.

by relinquishing his right It could then pass directly

:53:12.:53:13.

to his son Prince William, the Duke Of Cambridge,

:53:14.:53:17.

who is an engaging young man The Prince, or rather the Duke

:53:18.:53:19.

of Highgrove, or whatever he'd be called by then,

:53:20.:53:24.

could continue to express his personal views on any subject

:53:25.:53:33.

he liked quite harmlessly. He must be the best hope for his

:53:34.:53:36.

dynasty and indeed for all of us. And Geoffrey Wheatcroft

:53:37.:53:44.

joins me now from Bristol. You are saying that we should skip a

:53:45.:53:52.

generation, leave out Prince Charles and go straight to Prince William.

:53:53.:53:57.

Is that possible, though? What is the historical precedent? I can't

:53:58.:54:01.

immediately think of one but anything is possible under the

:54:02.:54:03.

constitutional system, that is another of the aspects of its

:54:04.:54:07.

genius, it would take an act of Parliament and it could pass as

:54:08.:54:13.

quickly as the abdication was in 1936. The prince would simply

:54:14.:54:19.

relinquish his right to succeed his mother and would pass their 40s

:54:20.:54:25.

eldest son. You said you are unhappy with the fact that the monarch

:54:26.:54:32.

shouldn't express public or personal -- shouldn't express personal

:54:33.:54:35.

opinions in public and Prince Charles has done that, but why are

:54:36.:54:38.

they not allowed to have a point of view? Because if it was completely

:54:39.:54:45.

harmless or uncontroversial, there would be no problem. But he doesn't,

:54:46.:54:51.

he has chosen a large number of subjects, it is not that he even has

:54:52.:54:55.

a particular political standpoint, the funny thing is on subjects like

:54:56.:55:02.

his dislike of contemporary architecture and his love of the

:55:03.:55:06.

book of Common prayer he is what you could call Daily Telegraph, then on

:55:07.:55:11.

his criticism of genetically modified crops and his respect for

:55:12.:55:18.

Islam he is more Guardian. He's not that political, as you say. Have all

:55:19.:55:22.

previous monarchs are obeyed the rules? Oh, yes. Gradually the power

:55:23.:55:34.

of the monarch, 200 years ago, 250, the reign of King George III, the

:55:35.:55:41.

monarch was very much his own chief executive, like the American

:55:42.:55:46.

president today, he didn't even require a parliamentary majority,

:55:47.:55:50.

the genius of our system as it has evolved as you have on the one hand

:55:51.:55:55.

Parliamentary Government with the Prime Minister at any given moment

:55:56.:56:01.

with a Commons majority and the monarchy does not have a political

:56:02.:56:07.

personality. Stay with us because we have two lawmakers here in the

:56:08.:56:12.

studio. What would you do, Heidi Alexander, would you support a bill

:56:13.:56:15.

that said, let's skip a generation and go to Prince William? That is

:56:16.:56:19.

probably for Prince Charles and Prince William to decide amongst

:56:20.:56:25.

themselves. I personally have not spent a lot of time thinking about

:56:26.:56:30.

this issue, I can't get too excited about Prince Charles expressing

:56:31.:56:34.

views. Where I would be concerned is if decision-makers were unduly or

:56:35.:56:40.

inappropriately influenced by things that Prince Charles had said, but my

:56:41.:56:45.

motto in life, really, is everything in moderation, and so I think I

:56:46.:56:50.

don't really have an issue with it and at the end of the day we have

:56:51.:56:54.

had a situation where the Queen has been the monarch for an incredibly

:56:55.:56:58.

long period of time and Prince Charles is a human being and will

:56:59.:57:03.

have views like other people. Why shouldn't he express them, does that

:57:04.:57:07.

exclude him from becoming the next monarch? Geoffrey Wheatcroft is

:57:08.:57:10.

probably one of our greatest living journalists but on this issue I

:57:11.:57:14.

think he is mistaken. We are not entitled as subjects to a Paul King

:57:15.:57:23.

or short king or literate Queen or illiterate queen, we get the eldest

:57:24.:57:27.

child of the sovereign and I don't think there is any chance of

:57:28.:57:33.

Geoffrey 's eloquent proposal gaining traction. I fear it will

:57:34.:57:37.

deprive him in future of the Sir Geoffrey Wheatcroft! You have been

:57:38.:57:45.

warned, Geoffrey Wheatcroft! The original justification for the

:57:46.:57:49.

Monaco was the divine right of kings and to take on a point from Andrew

:57:50.:57:53.

Mitchell, if Prince Charles has been chosen by God then we should not let

:57:54.:57:58.

his views on GM crops, for example, getting the way. King Edward VIII

:57:59.:58:04.

chosen by God, would have been if he had been crowned, which he wasn't.

:58:05.:58:09.

But that was his personal choice. The abdication was a very brave

:58:10.:58:14.

constitutional crisis in deed, and I foresee some such crisis arising if

:58:15.:58:21.

the prince inherit the throne and is publicly at odds with His Majesty's

:58:22.:58:27.

Government on some highly contentious issues. That is what he

:58:28.:58:33.

has threatened himself. I just don't think you will be. Everything about

:58:34.:58:38.

Prince Charles suggests he accepts the conventions which have governed

:58:39.:58:41.

the British monarchy for the last 100 years and I think he will make a

:58:42.:58:46.

very fine king. And also, Geoffrey Wheatcroft, the Queen has

:58:47.:58:49.

scrupulously avoided expressing personal opinions in public but they

:58:50.:58:52.

have slipped out or others have said it on her behalf on things like

:58:53.:58:56.

Brexit and Scottish independence and it has not harmed her, it is not a

:58:57.:59:01.

constitutional problem, is it? It is different because she has not said

:59:02.:59:05.

it in public, people beat what she says sometimes as they leek anything

:59:06.:59:10.

else but I don't think, that does not compare with the ceaseless

:59:11.:59:13.

expression of controversial opinions by the Prince. I will have to leave

:59:14.:59:17.

it there but thank you for talking to us. Just time before we go to

:59:18.:59:19.

find out the answer to the quiz. The Government's new aircraft

:59:20.:59:23.

carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth. So, Andrew and Heidi,

:59:24.:59:26.

what's the correct answer? We have conferred and we believe

:59:27.:59:38.

that it is Boaty McBoatface. Well, you are both right, well done, there

:59:39.:59:44.

it is. That is Boaty McBoatface, but the vessel from which it will be

:59:45.:59:48.

launched in the future is Sir David Attenborough. Well done both be.

:59:49.:59:49.

The One O'Clock News is starting over on BBC One now.

:59:50.:59:54.

I'll be here at noon tomorrow with all the big

:59:55.:59:57.

Jo Coburn is joined by former international development secretary Andrew Mitchell and former shadow health secretary Heidi Alexander. They discuss the latest on the triggering of Article 50 as MPs debate House of Lords amendments to the Brexit Bill.

Plus a film and interview with journalist Geoffrey Wheatcroft who thinks the crown should skip Prince Charles and pass straight to Prince William after Queen Elizabeth II.