23/06/2011 Daily Politics


23/06/2011

Andrew Neil and Anita Anand talk about banks, environment policy, studying abroad, and the banning of wild animals from circuses. They are joined by Labour peer Joan Bakewell.


Similar Content

Browse content similar to 23/06/2011. Check below for episodes and series from the same categories and more!

Transcript


LineFromTo

Morning, Fox, will come to the Daily Politics. Robin Hood Clegg

:00:29.:00:34.

says he wants to give you the banks, but is it any more than political

:00:34.:00:40.

posturing? He is friends with huskies, we know that, but his any

:00:40.:00:43.

peace in Europe are voting against his Government's policy on the

:00:43.:00:46.

environment. What is the Prime Minister going to do about it?

:00:46.:00:50.

Going Dutch, our students are making big savings by studying

:00:50.:00:58.

abroad. And MPs prepared to vote to ban on wild animals from circuses,

:00:58.:01:02.

but is the centuries of tradition really cruel? The Republic want us,

:01:02.:01:06.

they support us, and we really ought to be listening to the people

:01:06.:01:11.

of vote with their feet. -- the public want us.

:01:11.:01:16.

All of that is coming out in the next half hour. With us for the

:01:16.:01:19.

duration is writer, broadcaster and Labour peer Joan Bakewell. Lovely

:01:19.:01:25.

to have you on the programme. whenever Nick Clegg goes abroad, he

:01:25.:01:29.

makes an announcement! He probably has nothing else to do, idling away

:01:29.:01:34.

hours with journalists on the plane. It seems that is largely unreported

:01:34.:01:40.

trip to Brazil, he did not know he was there, did you? It has inspired

:01:40.:01:43.

the Deputy Prime Minister to launch a scheme which would see shares in

:01:43.:01:49.

the nationalised banks, the Royal Bank and Lloyds, distributed to the

:01:49.:01:52.

taxpayers who bailed them out in the first place. It is not clear

:01:52.:01:57.

how it will go down with the Chancellor, because it seems Mr on

:01:57.:02:01.

Thorn was banking on using the profits of reselling the banks to

:02:01.:02:06.

help improve the public finances. - - Mr Osborne. Here's a thought, cut

:02:06.:02:11.

our taxes before the next election! Do Chancellors do that? It comes

:02:11.:02:16.

from an idea that was put forward originally by Lib Dem MP Stephen

:02:16.:02:23.

Williams, who joins us now. Welcome. Hello! Let me just clarify this, is

:02:23.:02:29.

it an official Lib Dem policy to do this, but not yet coalition policy?

:02:29.:02:33.

It is not officially Lib Dem policy yet until our party conference

:02:33.:02:38.

discusses it, because that is the way we make policy, but it has been

:02:38.:02:42.

pretty well endorsed by everyone who matters in the party from the

:02:42.:02:45.

Deputy Prime Minister down. You may remember, Andrew, I launched this

:02:45.:02:50.

pamphlet on your programme back in March. It is an idea that has been

:02:50.:02:54.

gathering momentum. Even John Redwood, who was on television this

:02:54.:02:58.

morning, said he was in broad support. Is it an idea whose time

:02:58.:03:02.

has come? I think so, and more people are coming on board when

:03:02.:03:06.

they see it is popular. There are not many people who I have spoken

:03:06.:03:16.
:03:16.:03:18.

to in the last six months who, after the conversation, say, no, I

:03:18.:03:23.

don't like that. It is popular, and it makes a clear link between the

:03:23.:03:25.

nationalisation of the banks and the benefit when they return to

:03:25.:03:30.

profitability in the near future. That is interesting. You think the

:03:30.:03:33.

banks are ready to return to the private sector? I think the

:03:33.:03:37.

preparations need to be made now for when they are ready. The share

:03:37.:03:41.

prices are still pretty much in the debt. Yes, but those share prices

:03:41.:03:45.

are probably artificially depressed at the moment because there is no

:03:45.:03:49.

real knowledge of expectation as to what the government is going to do

:03:49.:03:53.

with the two enormous holdings that it has in these banks. Once the

:03:53.:03:57.

Government makes its intentions clear, at the share prices will

:03:57.:04:02.

rally to some extent, but the main driver is the profitability of the

:04:02.:04:08.

banks themselves. Do you really want to lumber all of us with bank

:04:08.:04:12.

shares just on the brink of a European sovereign debt crisis?

:04:12.:04:16.

These banks have balance sheets full of a new toxic waste called

:04:16.:04:20.

European sovereign debt. We would not be lumbered with them. The

:04:20.:04:25.

state owns these bank shares at the moment, so we have already got them.

:04:25.:04:29.

I mean the individuals. Treasury would only dispose of

:04:29.:04:34.

these shares when either it knows it can do so at a profit in terms

:04:34.:04:38.

of a normal privatisation that you and I will remember from the

:04:39.:04:42.

Thatcher and John Major era, all to do it in his rather more

:04:42.:04:46.

imaginative way, where every citizen gets the benefit. We can

:04:46.:04:49.

only do it when the market conditions are right. We are not

:04:49.:04:53.

there yet, but we must be optimistic that both are these

:04:53.:04:57.

banks, which have been saved by the taxpayer, they have been in

:04:57.:05:00.

intensive care, and pretty soon they will be ready to return to the

:05:00.:05:05.

private sector, which is where they belong. I want to do that in a way

:05:05.:05:10.

in which everyone can benefit. quick questions before I get our

:05:10.:05:15.

guest's reaction. You say it is not yet Lib Dem policy, but the

:05:15.:05:19.

manifesto policy was, we will turn Northern Rock into a building

:05:19.:05:24.

society. You did not get away on that, did you? We will have to wait

:05:24.:05:28.

and see what happens. It has been privatised. It may well be sold to

:05:28.:05:32.

an existing building society, of course. There are many options.

:05:32.:05:37.

Unlikely. Let me ask you this. Who would get these shares? Every

:05:37.:05:42.

citizen? That is the model I have proposed. How would we do find

:05:42.:05:46.

that? If your name is on the electoral roll? That is the way I

:05:46.:05:52.

suggested. Electro role has more holes than a Swiss cheese. -- the

:05:52.:05:56.

electoral roll. I would say it is pretty robust. There would have to

:05:56.:06:01.

be some clean-up operations. Students and MPs would get two sets

:06:01.:06:09.

of shares! I think we would be caught out! There Ahsan is used

:06:09.:06:14.

with the Elektra Register, but it remains the only complete dataset

:06:14.:06:18.

of all 46 million adults in the UK. -- there our son is used with the

:06:18.:06:22.

collector of register. What do you think? I think it is a bit of a

:06:22.:06:28.

gimmick. A gimmick! Offer people �1,000, they are going to like it,

:06:28.:06:32.

they are going to be very pleased with it. If it is every citizen,

:06:32.:06:36.

that includes people who do not pay taxes, and there is already lots of

:06:36.:06:42.

talk about people saying, you mean people who do not pay taxes are

:06:42.:06:48.

going to get his bonus, too? Also, we already Tony Banks, don't we?

:06:48.:06:53.

Isn't that the point of the purchase? -- owned by the banks.

:06:53.:06:57.

What they are doing is making us into shareholders and privatising

:06:57.:07:02.

the banks by giving us the money. I think we should all get together as

:07:02.:07:04.

shareholders, go to the shareholders' meeting and vote down

:07:04.:07:09.

the bonuses and the pay of the chief executive. That would be a

:07:09.:07:15.

case of doing it. Stephen Williams, keeps in touch with us. OK.

:07:15.:07:19.

regard the Daily Politics as your outlet for taking this debate on!

:07:19.:07:23.

That is very kind of you. Now, the government is committed to

:07:24.:07:30.

increasing our target for reducing CO2 emissions from 20% down to 30%

:07:31.:07:34.

by 2020, which is far enough in the future of one of the current bunch

:07:34.:07:38.

to be held accountable if it does that happen. But it will not apply

:07:38.:07:42.

to the heart head generated in this studio, which is preserved by

:07:42.:07:49.

national statute. -- hot air. Some MEPs are planning to vote against

:07:49.:07:53.

the Government's policy today. Anita has the details. I will do my

:07:53.:07:57.

best to explain. You are right, David Cameron has repeatedly said

:07:57.:08:01.

he wants the commission to be the greenest government ever, so in his

:08:01.:08:05.

bunny hugging coalition agreement, he said he wanted to raise the EU

:08:05.:08:12.

carbon cutting target from 20% up to 30% by 2020. Today, there is

:08:12.:08:15.

this non-binding European Parliament vote that calls for the

:08:15.:08:20.

target to be raised. All well and good, not really, because the

:08:20.:08:23.

Conservative MEPs are threatening to blow smoke all over the Prime

:08:23.:08:27.

Minister's green credentials by voting against raising the target.

:08:27.:08:31.

Led by Martin Callanan, they say a higher target would harm business,

:08:31.:08:35.

and that any unilateral action would put Europe at a competitive

:08:35.:08:39.

disadvantage to rivals like China. Martin Callanan is also not

:08:39.:08:42.

particularly bothered by the coalition's flower-power, sharing

:08:42.:08:47.

agreement, saying, we are not in coalition with the Lib Dems in the

:08:47.:08:51.

European Parliament. At PMQs, Mr Cameron reiterated that he was

:08:51.:08:56.

committed to the 30% target, and in his words, nothing is going to

:08:56.:09:02.

change that. He added, I will work on my any pace. So the question

:09:02.:09:06.

today is, do those MEPs feel a little bit like they have been work

:09:06.:09:12.

done? Andrew is going to find out. It is a very good question. We

:09:12.:09:16.

asked for a minister to defend the Government's support for this 30%

:09:16.:09:19.

target, but strangely none was available. We are delighted to be

:09:19.:09:24.

joined from Brussels by a Conservative MEP Roger Helmer, and

:09:24.:09:28.

in the studio in Westminster we have Liberal Democrat MP Duncan

:09:28.:09:32.

Hames. Well can do both. Roger Helmer, are you voting against

:09:32.:09:37.

these targets because you think they are economically damaging or

:09:37.:09:42.

because you do not think Climate Change Act is such a big deal?

:09:42.:09:45.

you may be surprised that I am voting against them because I think

:09:45.:09:50.

they are bad for the environment. These proposals do not make sense

:09:50.:09:54.

in economic or environmental terms. They will simply drive jobs,

:09:54.:09:59.

production and investment out of the EU entirely, and into other

:09:59.:10:03.

jurisdictions with lower standards. Instead of one tonne of CO2 in

:10:03.:10:07.

Britain, you would get two tonnes in China. I cannot see how that is

:10:07.:10:12.

any good for the environment or for anybody except the Chinese. Duncan

:10:12.:10:16.

Hames, there is a trend for heavy industry to leave Europe and go to

:10:16.:10:20.

the emerging markets. If you put on these heavy targets which will

:10:20.:10:23.

raise the cost of doing business here, you simply reinforce that

:10:23.:10:28.

trend. Well, he is way behind the curve in this debate if he does not

:10:28.:10:30.

think China is trying to reduce the carpet intensity of its own

:10:30.:10:36.

economic activity. But not a 30% target like ours, they open a new

:10:36.:10:40.

coalmine every week. We need to make sure we have the jobs which

:10:40.:10:44.

will be sustainable in the future. What you say to his point that jobs

:10:44.:10:48.

would go? The Tory position in Europe has more to do with the fact

:10:48.:10:50.

that their only friends in the European Parliament are a right-

:10:50.:10:55.

wing Polish party who are worried about their jobs. He is putting

:10:55.:10:58.

their interests ahead of British economic policy, which is

:10:58.:11:04.

astounding. Lay the ball, not the man. Never mind his Polish allies,

:11:04.:11:08.

answer his question. If you make these targets to strike, stricter

:11:08.:11:14.

than anybody else, as ours are at 30%, we will lose jobs to the

:11:14.:11:17.

emerging markets. What is the counter argument, that is all I'm

:11:17.:11:20.

asking. The whole point of negotiations across Europe is to

:11:20.:11:24.

ensure that within a larger economic bloc, there is a level

:11:24.:11:28.

playing field. That is why we are working with you on a common target.

:11:28.:11:35.

That is why we are trying to work internationally, and frankly to say

:11:35.:11:39.

that we should not take part in international agreements, that we

:11:39.:11:43.

should sign with whoever the lifeguards in this debate is not

:11:43.:11:52.

really in the interests of our We in Britain now have this tougher

:11:52.:11:57.

target of 30%, when it at least makes sense to get a level playing

:11:57.:12:00.

field if we went along with the rest of Europe having that targets,

:12:00.:12:08.

too? Well, the whole idea of a 30% target is, of course, absurd. The

:12:08.:12:11.

Liberal Democrat wants to lead on this issue, but nobody else is

:12:11.:12:15.

following. I'm not voting to be nice to our Polish colleagues,

:12:15.:12:18.

although I'm happy to be nice to them. I'm voting for a common sense

:12:18.:12:24.

policy in Britain. What is the answer to my question? If you would

:12:24.:12:27.

stop playing the man and start playing the ball, what is the

:12:27.:12:32.

answer to my point? We have got this very tough standard, so it

:12:32.:12:36.

would be helpful if the rest of Europe had a tough standard as well.

:12:36.:12:41.

Well, some of my colleagues would be prepared to vote for 30% if the

:12:41.:12:44.

rest of the world went for it. But the rest of the world is not going

:12:44.:12:50.

for 30%. We should not have 30%. We will not be able to deliver, and

:12:50.:12:53.

the sooner that the coalition government recognises that its

:12:53.:12:57.

policies do not make sense, do not do any good for the environment and

:12:57.:13:02.

are damaging the economy and are going to force homers into fuel

:13:02.:13:05.

poverty, pensioners will literally die because of what we are doing in

:13:06.:13:09.

terms of bringing policies. This whole programme needs to be

:13:09.:13:13.

reviewed. There is a growing head of steam, both within Brussels and

:13:13.:13:19.

in Westminster, to look at it again. We cannot go on with this folly.

:13:19.:13:24.

a time when fuel prices are rising rapidly, we have just seen huge

:13:24.:13:28.

increases with Scottish Power, and we also know that the poorer you

:13:28.:13:31.

are, the more of your income you have to spend on fuel as well as

:13:31.:13:37.

food, does it make sense for greens like you to be having the fuel

:13:37.:13:41.

bills of ordinary people who are struggling to afford it? You're

:13:41.:13:45.

already adding �200 on to the average fuel bill with these

:13:45.:13:49.

policies. Prices are rising in line with the oil price, and what we

:13:49.:13:54.

need for those people is to get energy bills off the fossil fuel

:13:54.:13:58.

them. Even if prices keep going up, we can get energy bills down

:13:58.:14:02.

through measures such as the Green deal, which we are putting through

:14:02.:14:06.

Parliament at this moment. I will repeat this again. Energy bills are

:14:06.:14:12.

already rising because of world oil and gas prices, and because nuclear

:14:12.:14:16.

power is in retreat at the moment. You are increasing that rise. It is

:14:16.:14:23.

rising even more because of your green policies. Well, it is. It all

:14:23.:14:27.

depends on the oil price level. make electricity companies by twice

:14:27.:14:31.

the market rate for onshore wind power, three times for offshore. Is

:14:31.:14:36.

it fair to poor people that you are increasing their bills in that way?

:14:36.:14:39.

What is there for poorer people is the Green deal on energy, which

:14:39.:14:44.

will ensure that we reduce energy consumption and their energy bills.

:14:44.:14:48.

Whilst we cannot control prices, we can work to reduce people's bills,

:14:48.:14:51.

which addresses the very concerns about fuel poverty which you quite

:14:51.:14:56.

reasonably raised. There is no sign that bills will fall and the future.

:14:56.:15:00.

Under this measure, they will rise. Not if we do not get them off the

:15:01.:15:05.

oil crisis. Nothing you are doing well do that. The Prime Minister

:15:05.:15:10.

said he would work a new, have you been worked over? -- he would work

:15:10.:15:18.

We haven't been worked over. I have heard nothing from London. As far

:15:18.:15:22.

as I know, my colleagues haven't. see. There's been no pressure. Can

:15:22.:15:28.

I go back on that last point? Andrew, you were right about wind

:15:28.:15:35.

power. It is disingenuous to say prices for electricity are lining

:15:35.:15:39.

with the oil price. No, they are not. They are rising much higher.

:15:39.:15:45.

All right. A lot of old people die from the cold in winter? There are

:15:45.:15:50.

a lot of other ways of keeping people alive rather than juggling

:15:50.:15:57.

oil prices. Quite clearly, the Green Agenda is a long-term agenda.

:15:57.:16:02.

To be dicing around with short-term consequences as a way of blocking

:16:02.:16:05.

the long-term engagement is folly. We have to take on the long-term

:16:06.:16:10.

issues. Is it right to be increasing the fuel bills of the

:16:10.:16:16.

old and poor at a time when their fuel bills are already rising?

:16:16.:16:21.

way to tackle that is to deal with the problems of the old and poor

:16:21.:16:31.
:16:31.:16:33.

which after all caused many other remedies too. Other people can bear

:16:33.:16:38.

the burden who can afford it. you for that. Give us a call if the

:16:38.:16:43.

Prime Minister threatens you at any stage. I will let you know! Thank

:16:43.:16:49.

you. Now, here is a question: Why spend �9,000 an English university

:16:49.:16:54.

Ze agree when you can get a cheaper degree somewhere else in Europe? --

:16:54.:16:59.

degree when you can get a cheaper degree somewhere else in Europe?

:16:59.:17:07.

The University of Groningen is a particularly popular destination

:17:07.:17:10.

for British students where numbers have increased from a handful a few

:17:10.:17:15.

years ago to more than 100 thousand-of-this year. Paul Henley

:17:15.:17:22.

sampled the student life -- 100,000 this year. Paul Henley sampled the

:17:22.:17:25.

student life. Choosing to study abroad doesn't necessarily mean you

:17:25.:17:32.

have to give up the familiar comfort of a student night out.

:17:32.:17:39.

This man is finishing his first year at Groningen University. He is

:17:39.:17:44.

from St Albans. At a Dutch student comedy night with his friends and

:17:44.:17:49.

flatmates, some of the jokes might be lost in translation. I'll take

:17:49.:17:54.

care of the booze, lady! A few pints probably help. LAUGHTER

:17:54.:17:58.

Netherlands is one of the few places in Europe you can study

:17:58.:18:01.

entirely in English and get by in daily life without the local

:18:01.:18:08.

language. And you can live quite cheaply here. Welcome to my humble

:18:08.:18:14.

abode. He shares a big flat with three other students paying just

:18:14.:18:18.

over �400 a month. This is Adrian's corner! He missed his A-level grade

:18:18.:18:22.

force the university he wanted in the UK, heard about the Dutch

:18:22.:18:26.

option and realised he was on to a winner, even if it meant being a

:18:26.:18:30.

pioneer. It feels unique, it feels like I am doing some independent.

:18:30.:18:36.

Groningen is in the top 150 of most university world rankings,

:18:36.:18:40.

somewhere on a par with Liverpool or Leeds in the UK. Once you know

:18:40.:18:44.

the facts, it seems less a question of why study in the Netherlands

:18:44.:18:52.

than why not? His annual tuition fee of �1,500 sounds good compared

:18:52.:18:57.

to the �9,000 in the UK. It sounds better when you know he can claim

:18:57.:19:00.

it back from the Dutch government. If he works eight hours a week, he

:19:00.:19:06.

can also get a grant of �250 a month and free rail travel anywhere

:19:06.:19:11.

in the country. That is out of gratitude, he's chosen to have

:19:11.:19:17.

Dutch lessons. Dutch universities aren't part of the British UCAS

:19:17.:19:23.

system yet but they are working on it and applying doesn't sound

:19:23.:19:26.

complicated. You contact us through the website. If A-levels are

:19:26.:19:33.

sufficient, you are admitted. higher education might still be an

:19:33.:19:38.

unusual one for a British person, but maybe not for long. I would

:19:38.:19:42.

recommend it. Surprised more people haven't come here. Joan Bakewell is

:19:42.:19:47.

still with us. Norman Tebbit did say "get on your bike" but he

:19:47.:19:51.

didn't mean sending some of our brightest people to the Netherlands.

:19:51.:19:56.

What do you make of it? I think it is a wonderful idea. The more

:19:56.:20:00.

students across Europe that go to each other's universities the more

:20:00.:20:04.

we will understand each other. I think it will be wonderful. Getting

:20:04.:20:10.

on your bike will be perfect for Amsterdam. Won't it be one-way

:20:10.:20:15.

traffic? If they can get an education for free, or very

:20:15.:20:20.

subsidised, we are charging �9,000 a year, who is going to come here?

:20:20.:20:25.

Well, there are lots of people now among our student body who want to

:20:25.:20:31.

go to universities who might well find a better niche abroad. I think

:20:31.:20:36.

that would be to spread the culture. I mean, we have too many students

:20:36.:20:39.

really than our universities can take. I think that would be a

:20:39.:20:44.

terrific way of spreading the load and bringing other students here

:20:44.:20:47.

who might be specialists in particular subjects which we are

:20:47.:20:51.

particularly good. Specialists or rich? Doesn't the matter of tuition

:20:51.:20:56.

fees going up - we have had that argument many times. Does it mean

:20:56.:21:00.

we are the bastions for rich people's education? That is so. So

:21:00.:21:06.

we do have a two tier system. So let the market decide. Let the

:21:06.:21:09.

students go abroad and see that they get a good education for less

:21:09.:21:14.

and if we believe in a market economy, it should come right.

:21:14.:21:17.

the market decide? If the market decides and there are numerous

:21:17.:21:21.

courses which will no longer be offered in this country because the

:21:21.:21:26.

market says you don't earn that much when you do them, and you are

:21:26.:21:29.

not... You don't have to pay back your student loan of course. You

:21:29.:21:32.

only pay back your student loan when you have made a good living

:21:32.:21:36.

out of having the degree. You are comfortable with the fact there is

:21:36.:21:40.

not an even playing field in Europe? I'm - that is an

:21:40.:21:44.

abstraction. I like the idea of a lot of young people going to each

:21:44.:21:51.

other's country to study. Before any of you start tweeting,

:21:51.:21:55.

we are aware that European students do not pay fees at Scottish

:21:55.:22:00.

universities. Before you start tweeting further, we are aware that

:22:00.:22:06.

English students do pay fees at Scottish universities. When it

:22:07.:22:15.

comes to plates, you keep spinning them. A circus cliche? Yes, but

:22:15.:22:18.

this story is about circuses. A cross-party group of MPs will

:22:18.:22:24.

attempt to change the law banning the use of wild animals in circuses

:22:24.:22:27.

in England. Yes, only England. It is Westminster. It's a practice

:22:28.:22:32.

they believe to be cruel. The Government prefers a licensing

:22:32.:22:36.

regime and as Adam Fleming discovered, circuses that use lions,

:22:36.:22:40.

tigers and elephants, they vigorously defend the practice.

:22:40.:22:44.

Recently pitched up in this field in Surrey, the Great British Circus,

:22:44.:22:51.

its owner is one of the few who still keeps wild animals. General

:22:51.:22:56.

Motors has gone bust and I am still here. The public want us. They

:22:56.:22:59.

support us. We really ought to be listening to the people who vote

:22:59.:23:05.

with their feet. The punters here do seem happy. Mostly. I can see

:23:05.:23:10.

both sides but as long as everything is by the book, it's

:23:10.:23:19.

fair. I do like to see animals in the wild. I love the animals.

:23:19.:23:22.

Martin wouldn't allow our cameras behind-the-scenes but he showed me

:23:22.:23:27.

where the animals were kept. Back there, there are five tigers,

:23:27.:23:31.

camels, llamas, even some reindeer. They are all in cages, some of them

:23:31.:23:35.

with electric fences, but they have all got shade and water and to this

:23:35.:23:39.

untrained eye they didn't look unhealthy. That won't reassure

:23:39.:23:44.

concerned MPs and campaigners who say this amounts to mistreatment.

:23:44.:23:49.

And nowadays protesters are as much a part of circus life as clowns and

:23:49.:23:53.

candy floss. They point to secret filming like this from earlier this

:23:53.:23:57.

year, an elephant called Ann from another zoo. The courts are daily

:23:57.:24:01.

full of pet owners who don't care for their animals properly. Since

:24:01.:24:06.

1932, there have been seven cases of mistreatment of animals, seven.

:24:06.:24:10.

Seven too many, but compared with the rest of the animal-keeping

:24:10.:24:15.

world, it is not a bad record. These horses are domesticated so

:24:15.:24:18.

don't count as wild animals. The Government's preferred solution to

:24:18.:24:22.

all this is a new system of licences, but that is not enough

:24:22.:24:28.

for the backbenchers pushing for a total ban. Welcome to big tent

:24:28.:24:32.

politics. See what he did there? We are

:24:32.:24:36.

joined by the Conservative MP Mark Pritchard who wants to see a ban on

:24:36.:24:43.

the use of non-domestic animals in circuses. There seems to be a

:24:43.:24:49.

three-line whip out to block your move. Why? That is something for

:24:49.:24:53.

the Whip's Office. I am rather surprised. 92% of the public want

:24:53.:24:59.

to see a ban on wild animals in circuses, 64% of MPs said they want

:25:00.:25:05.

to see a ban. An Early Day Motion has attracted over 200 MPs. It is

:25:05.:25:09.

in the top ten of Early Day Motions. There is wide support for a ban,

:25:09.:25:15.

not only in Parliament, but also outside of Parliament. In view of

:25:15.:25:22.

that level of support, why would your leader want to thwart your

:25:22.:25:27.

ambition? I have seen some of the rumour mill on the blogs, I'm not

:25:27.:25:30.

going to comment on conversations I may or may not have had with

:25:30.:25:34.

officials from Number Ten. A lot of colleagues have telephoned me this

:25:34.:25:41.

morning and say they are rather perplexed why Number Ten have taken

:25:41.:25:44.

a personal interest in this. The Government is very busy given we

:25:44.:25:48.

are at war in two places, we have a public deficit to deal with, and

:25:48.:25:53.

yet they are applying a three-line whip on the ban, the use of wild

:25:53.:25:58.

animals in circuses. Have you been told Mark, get into line here?

:25:58.:26:02.

not going to comment on what conversations I may or may not have

:26:02.:26:07.

had. Yes, then? I get calls from all sorts of people in different

:26:07.:26:11.

parts of the party all of the time. That is a question perhaps you need

:26:11.:26:15.

to put to Number Ten. All I do know is that there's wide support for

:26:15.:26:21.

this ban. I'm very perplexed why there's been a three-line whip put

:26:21.:26:25.

on my motion. The Government tabled an amendment to my motion which

:26:25.:26:31.

wouldn't bring aboutliness Let's talk about the amendment. What does

:26:31.:26:36.

the amendment suggest? What is the Government's plan? I have had my

:26:36.:26:40.

run-ins with Mr Speaker as Andrew knows. I have to put on record here

:26:40.:26:45.

today on live television Mr Speaker has once again proven that he is a

:26:45.:26:49.

champion for Parliament and a champion for the backbenchers.

:26:49.:26:51.

Despite the fact 44 Members of Parliament signed the amendment

:26:51.:26:56.

which would have blocked my motion being voted upon, the speaker has

:26:56.:27:03.

not selected that amendment. It was a Government amendment Theyskens'

:27:03.:27:13.

Theory got to 44 MPs. That is -- amendment which they got to 44 MPs

:27:13.:27:19.

to sign. Forget about the mechanics. I won't ask you again. But in such

:27:19.:27:22.

an important time in Parliament, what is the argument that is being

:27:22.:27:26.

put forward by those who seek to thwart you as to why they are

:27:26.:27:30.

trying to thwart you? I will answer that. I will address the licensing

:27:30.:27:35.

point. The proposal is a licence of circuses. The problem is it will

:27:35.:27:41.

give a green light for an import of a new generation of animals so

:27:41.:27:45.

tigers, elephants, lions, zebras and camels. However well they may

:27:45.:27:50.

or may not be treated, the fact is they are travelling all the time in

:27:50.:27:54.

very cramped conditions, both housed and transported in cramped

:27:54.:27:59.

conditions. I want to see an end to that. You don't know why they are

:27:59.:28:04.

thwarting you? The Government is saying, the statement on 19th May,

:28:04.:28:14.
:28:14.:28:14.

the parliamentary secretary came along and told the House, the fact

:28:14.:28:19.

is the Government is saying that European Services Directive is

:28:19.:28:23.

being breached, it is not. Thank you very much. A quick comment from

:28:23.:28:29.

you? Circuses have moved on. The most successful circuses rely on

:28:29.:28:32.

the brilliant ability of trapeze artists and that is what we want to

:28:32.:28:40.

see. Thank you. Beware of the revenge of the clowns! The Guess

:28:40.:28:45.

The Year - 1961, the year of the Bay of Pigs. You have to pick a

:28:45.:28:52.

Andrew Neil and Anita Anand have the top political stories of the day.

Nick Clegg says he wants to give the banks away to you, but is it anymore than political posturing? Andrew and Anita talk to Lib Dem MP Stephen Williams on that one.

Tory MEPs in Europe are voting against the government's own policy on the environment, but what is the PM going to do about it? They talk to Roger Helmer MEP.

Going Dutch? There's a film on how students are making big savings by studying abroad.

And as MPs prepare to vote to ban wild animals from circuses, is this centuries-old tradition really cruel?

With Andrew and Anita for the whole programme is writer, broadcaster and Labour peer Joan Bakewell.


Download Subtitles

SRT

ASS