24/01/2013 Daily Politics


24/01/2013

Andrew Neil and Jo Coburn present the latest political news, interviews and debate.


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Good afternoon. Welcome to The Daily Politics. Following his

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speech on Europe yesterday and the prom of a referendum, the PM woke

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up so of of the best headlines he's ever enjoyed.

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What happens next? The IMF tells Boy George he should consider

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scaling back his austerity measures to promote growth. Is it just a

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dog's life being an MP? Are they paid too little or too much? Don't

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shout all at once, we will discuss it later. We will ask if an army of

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snowmen could be the answer to Britain's flood defences. All that

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in the next hour. With us for the duration former police minister,

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Nick Herbert. Welcome. According to reports I have read, he left

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Government not so long ago to spend more time on politics. Is that

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true? No. What are you doing here? I don't know. You asked me! Is that

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it!? First today, let's talk about gay marriage because the Government

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is introducing a Bill on the subject later today. We won't know

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what is in it until tomorrow when it will be published. It will be

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called Extension of Marriage to Same-Sex Couples Bill. It is

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expected to get a bit of a stormy ride through politics. Nick Herbert,

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why is it so important to legislate for same-sex marriage? I think

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attitudes have changed in society towards gay people. I think the

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introduction of civil partnerships with an incredibly important step

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forward which gave equality to a limited extent. It gave gay couples

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the same rights, but not a marriage. Civil partnership is different.

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Those who are saying they don't want to move to gay marriage

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understand that too. They are saying it is different. A majority

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of the public now are in favour of same-sex marriage. If we are to

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fully complete that journey of equality, so that gay people really

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are treated in the same way as others, that this is a very

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important, final step. Let's talk about unity within the yeerp. The

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bill is published tomorrow -- -- the bill is published tomorrow.

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These are issues of conscience. There'll be a free vote. I think it

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is clear that most Members of Parliament will vote for it.

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Conservative MPs will probably be divided roughly down the middle. We

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will see. I hope that a majority of Conservative MPs will vote for this

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legislation. I hope they will be reassured by the protections given

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to churches. That's very important. I set up an organisation called

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Freedom to Marry. People should be allowed to get married, if churches

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want to do that and organisations like the Quakers agree. Those

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churches who don't want to do it should have the freedom to say it

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is something they don't agree with and should not be forced to perform

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same-sex marriages. It will be save in terms of challenges from the

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European Court of Human Rights. I think that will reassure a lot of

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my colleagues, who are concerned to ensure that religious rights are

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protected too. Phillip Hammond has expressed concern to a constituent

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that actually the safeguards you describe will not be robust enough

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to protect the Church. I don't know when he wrote that letter. The

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Attorney General has been clear to say he considers there'll not be a

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challenge. Lord PanicQC said it was beyond argument, the protections

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are rock-solid. The European Convention of Human Rights protects

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religious liberty, specifically. Therefore, we are sure that there

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won't be a challenge. Look at Spain. It's had same-sex marriage in Spain,

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a Catholic country, for seven years. There's not been a challenge there.

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Why wouldn't you support the idea of same-sex marriage in the Church

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of England? There were many people who thought that was going to be

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enshrined in this principal, that you would be able to get married in

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the Church of England. If they collectively decided that's what

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they wanted to do. If individual churches want to do it, they can't.

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They are part of an organisation which takes a collective view. The

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Church is entitled to have its own view on these matters. I hope that

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one day hay will change their mind, but that should be a decision for

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them and, in my view, not for legislators to make. That is

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fundamental to the principal of religious freedom. I think the

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Church is entitled to exercise its conscience. It is dividing the

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Cabinet. It is a free vote, you are right. Other Conservative MPs have

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claimed their postbags are full of letters from angry constituencies -

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- constituents. Is it a priority? myself believe it should be a

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priority if you say something is not a priority because of situation

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with the economy and so on, the danger is you will never take a

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step like this, there'll always be a reason not to do this. It is not

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something which need to take up an enormous amount of time. I go back

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to the point I made before - public opinion is in favour of this by a

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substantial majority and it is strengthening. The Guardian poll

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shows three-fifths of the public are in favour. That is a

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considerable increase. It is moving across all western countries as

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well. This is something that I think a majority of the public now

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believe that we should do. It's also something we can reassure

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those who want to exercise their conscience that their own church

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can be protected. Thank you. Now, it seems David Cameron just can't

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make enough speeches. Fresh from his Europe speech in the City of

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London yesterday, the Prime Minister's hot footed it to the

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World Economic Forum in dave vas, Switzerland, to share his thoughts

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on the world economy. Some of the international people present may

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not have liked this part of his message. I believe in low taxes.

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That is why my Government is cutting the top rate of income tax.

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We've cut corporation tax. I am a low-tax Conservative. I am not a

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companies should pay no tax Conservative. Individuals and

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businesses must pay their fair share. Businesses who think they

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can dodge that fair share or keep on selling to the UK and setting up

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ever more complex tax arrangements to squeeze their tax bills down,

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they need to wake up and smell the coffee, because the public who buy

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from them have had enough. Wake up and smell the coffee! Get it,

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Starbucks! Four people on this stage didn't like it, they loved it.

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There's been a walkout. There was no mention of reigning in austerity

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measures. Something the IMF told the Chancellor to consider. In his

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March bupblt, he said that today. With us is Nick Herbert and Rachel

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Reeve. The pound is sliding. It is the weakest kurstsy currency on the

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exchanges. We are looking to neg sieve growth in the fourth quarter

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of this year and the squeeze on living standards continues at its

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most severe since the 1920s. If that is success, what would a

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failed one look like? A couple of things you missed out. What was

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wrong? I am not challenging the things you were saying, but overall,

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let's look at the fact that the deficit has been reduced by a

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quarter. But is rising again. year, the deficit is being reduced

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by a quarter. There is a plan, which the Government is sticking to,

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to reduce the deficit over a period of years. That's the first thing.

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Let me interrupt you on that. First of all, it is true that in the last

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financial year you managed to cut the deficit by a quarter since you

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came into power, but the deficit is now rising again. It is now �7

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billion higher in this financial year, than it was in the same

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period the last financial year. The original plan by Mr Osborne was to

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cut the deficit by 75%, by 2015. The latest target is 40%. So,

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frankly, the plan is a mess! are right that the timetable for

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the reduction in the deficit has lengthened. That of course is

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related to the fact that growth and the recovery of growth has been

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slower for the reasons we know about, including sluggish growth in

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the eurozone. The revenues don't come in as fast. So plan A is in

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shreds. It's not in shreds. The timetable is longer. But the plan A

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involved a timetable. There was a timetable to reassure the markets

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and you've not done that. Since the timetable was a key part of plan A,

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plan A is in shreds. The timetable is longer. To say it is in shreds

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is-egging it. The second bit of economic news you missed out - you

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only read out neg sieve news - was significant reductions in

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ememployment, which I think are important. Important because job

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creation in this economy has actually been very strong, despite

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that downturn. So it is one million new jobs T job-creation figures we

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saw this week showed that actually a majority of those were not part-

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time jobs as is sometimes levelled, the abgsaig to us,. They were full-

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time jobs. We have more people in work than ever before. It's not

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sensible just to isolate the bits of economic news. I think the

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important thing for confidence in the economy, is that we have a

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credible plan to reduce the deficit, to get on top of public spending,

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to maintain low interest rates and we'll see what happens in relation

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to the next growth figures. In essence, the Government, not

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through its own will, is in a sense doing what you want it to. Gepbss

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its own will it is taking -- against its own will it is taking

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longer to cut the deficit. Government are borrowing because

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taxes are not coming in as they were supposed to and because the

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welfare bill is going up because we have more out of work than the

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Government an miss taited and more people in part-time -- anticipated

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and more people in part-time work. They are not borrowing more to

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invest. They are not borrowing more to protect police or nurses. The

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reason -- Nick says the reason is because of what is happening in the

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eurozone. Of course it is having an impact on the UK, but the German

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economy has grown by 2.5%. The US economy has grown by 4%. Our... If

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you look at the IMF... It came to a halt. In the last two years, these

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economies are growing. Our economy has flat-lined because of the

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decisions that George Osborne has made. First of all he blamed the

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snow, then the Royal Wedding, then the eurozone. At some point he has

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to take responsibility for his own actions. I don't think it is true

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that the deficit reduction has been the cause of slower growth. I think

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that most commentators would agree with that. Look at the IMF. They

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are saying the... The chief economist at the IMF, he's an

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important commentator. It would point to the collapse of confidence

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in the eurozone, which is our principal export market. Actually,

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the growth.... Please let me finish. It is not as high as we would like

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are not far off those of the United States. They are higher than most

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of the eurozone economies. Actually, I don't think it is right to say

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this is a plan that has failed. We know what your position is - your

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position has always been that actually we should spend more and

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borrow more. You are not therefore on strong grounds to attack this

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Government. You are the ones borrowing more - the cost of a

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failed plan. We employ more people at this time than in the country's

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history. That must cheer you up. Part of the reason is there are

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more people in the country. If you look at the numbers....

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Unemployment in Spain - lower in Britain. The only major economy

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where unemployment is lower than ours is Germany. The headline

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figures are good news, but there is a mixed bag there. Long-term

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unemployment is at the highest level since 1997. 500,000 people

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have been out of work for more than a year.

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It is a mixed bag. That is what I am saying. They are always a mixed

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bag. Every Year of the Blair-Brown Governments I could show you the

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unemployment figures. We have a challenge of people out of work

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more r -- for more one or two years. We know from the recessions of the

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1980s and 1990s that short-term unemployment turns into long-term

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unemployment. If someone has been out of work for two years, they are

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offered a job, that they have to take that opportunity. They have to

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take the job. What happens if they don't? They forfeit their benefits.

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Six months at the minimum wage - that is fair to taxpayers and to

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What would happen to them? They would not get their benefits of

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stock with baby out on the street? They have got a choice. -- would

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they be out on the street? I know constituents of mine who are

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filling in job application after job application and not getting

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anywhere. They are desperate for jobs. This is a tough but fair plan

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that we have funded but the government on not doing it anything

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about it. When the IMF says you need to look again at your

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austerity plan, the IMF for most of my lifetime has been a shrine to

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austerity, has forced it on every country, including this one in 1976.

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When the IMF is telling you that, you are in trouble. That was

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looking ahead to the Budget and the Chancellor will announce what he is

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going to do and we will also by then have had the next round of

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growth forecasts, but what we must have regard to his confidence.

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Confidence in the economy that has resulted in very low interest rates,

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which have been incredibly important... �300 billion of

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quantitative easing has had quite an impact on low-interest rates!

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That lost... Confident is undermined by an economy that went

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into a double-dip recession and has flat lined for two years. We have

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to move on! We will leave it. Ritual, we have to let you go but

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we are sad about that. Nice to see you. -- Rachel. David Cameron set

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out his European policy yesterday in his long-awaited and much-

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delayed speech. He promised a straightforward in-out referendum

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after the next general election once he has had a chance to

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negotiate a new settlement with the EU. That of course is assuming he

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wins the next election. He said that the European Union is failing

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its citizens. It needs to reform to become more flexible and more

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democratically accountable. He also wants to see Britain's relationship

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with Europe change. David Cameron says he'll set up a

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band to take back powers from Europe. For years the EU has been

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working towards ever closer union, but everything changes and now

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Conservatives want to repatriate powers back to the UK. We'll have

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to wait for the 2015 manifesto to get the full details of exactly

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what powers they want back. But the Prime Minister mentioned the

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working time directive in his speech yesterday. Conservative MPs

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also pray to restore powers over crime, the environment, agriculture

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and fishing. If they win the next election they'll ask the British

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people how deep is your love for Europe in a referendum on the new

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settlement. If there's a yes vote, and David Cameron says this is what

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he wants, Britain will stay in the EU but with powers back for good.

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But if voters decide that love ain't here anymore, we'll be out of

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the EU once and for all. Well, as we saw earlier, David Cameron has

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been speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos. And of course he

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was asked about the issue of Europe. What I am proposing is not just

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change for Britain. I am proposing change for Europe. We have to be

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frank about our performance. We are falling behind in the world. We are

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earth over regulating businesses and leaving citizens behind. And

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that is why I said Europe too often has been a cause of cost to

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business and complaint to citizens. We need to deal with that for

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everybody's sake in the European Union. RM clear it is obvious that

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change is coming in Europe. -- I am very clear. There will be further

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changes as the single currency inevitably means changes in Europe.

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As that happens, Britain has got a choice. We can stand back and hope

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it will go away and the argument will settle down, or, my approach,

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say yes, the European Union needs to change to suit the euro but it

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also needs to change in order to suit all of us as well. Make the

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arguments about a flexible and open and competitive Europe, take it to

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:20:13.:20:14.

the British people and seek their concern at in a referendum. -- seek

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their opinion in a referendum. With us now is Jack Straw, a former

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Foreign Secretary with experience of negotiating in Europe. And in

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Bielefeld in Germany is Elmar Brock, an MEP and Chair of the European

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Parliament Foreign Affairs Committee. Up I think we should

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look at a number of areas. A remind us. Common Agricultural Policy,

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Fisheries, employment and social legislation and then I think there

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are issues relating to the EU budget and putting in place

:20:46.:20:51.

measures to ensure there cannot be these constant increases in the

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cost of the administration. negotiation, you do not usually get

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everything you want. Do you have read lines, or what they call in

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Europe? An irreducible minimum that you would have to get before you

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could say, we should stay in Europe? The Prime Minister did not

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approach a bag way. He set up the principles. -- the Prime Minister

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did not approach it that way. know it. I am asking what do you

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think. We are looking at the areas of policy which could be more

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sensibly organised in our country. One of the more fundamental things

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the Prime Minister spoke about is really important, including

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challenging the idea that Britain has to subscribe to the idea of

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ever closer union... I understand that but as you know, it is not

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answering the question. I am not in a position to say, here is my

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shopping list. As far as I'm concerned, if we don't get that the

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negotiation is not a success. I think we should look at the areas I

:21:59.:22:04.

have set out and also look very closely at this driving principle

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of the EU, which is problematic for people in this country, that there

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has to be the constant ratchet of further integration... What is

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wrong with Britain wanting to repatriate some powers are back to

:22:19.:22:26.

Westminster? It looks like Britain wants to have special rights. The

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Prime Minister wants to use the internal market, someone who wants

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to use it has to fulfil all parts of the internal market and cannot

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make cherry-picking and if you talk of agricultural policy, a wish you

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good luck to them negotiate that with the French, and if you took a

:22:43.:22:53.
:22:53.:22:53.

bad European budget, it is so low, it is less than 1% of GDP and for

:22:53.:22:58.

the next seven years they will not be an increase in that so that will

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be another problem. We need common roots in the internal market. It is

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unequal playing field. What we can discuss is whether the rules should

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be high or low well. It is a question of normal legislation in

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the council and European parliament. You do not want to sit on the side

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bags without ever -- that banks without any influence. Ever-closer

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union it was the idea of John Major. It is from the treaty of Rome in

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1986. No. That is not true. Britain is now your biggest trading partner.

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No, with the ever-closer union, you are not right, it was not the

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treaty of Rome. I was there when it was signed! The last time I looked.

:23:56.:23:59.

Angela Merkel seems in a much more generous mood then you to help

:23:59.:24:06.

David Cameron? Angela Merkel has said there is no cherry-picking

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possible. What we can do is be to negotiate in the parliament and

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European Council better legislation. But it is not a question of

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repatriating powers but dealing with powers better. Germany has the

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highest social benefits and rights and it is very competitive and you

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talk about the working-time directive to 48 hours, this was

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introduced to Britain in 1908 in a from Christian Church also what is

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wrong with that? -- by Winston Churchill. Winston Churchill he is

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not right about everything. He was not right about India. I wish the

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Prime Minister luck. This is the wrong way to go about improvements

:25:06.:25:12.

in our position in Europe. One of the things that man just said that

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was passed by it was that David Cameron should get back his

:25:16.:25:20.

Conservative Party into the European People's Party, which is a

:25:20.:25:25.

centre right coalition in which the Conservative Party have for years

:25:25.:25:30.

and he's been part, and they would then have influence. The oddity

:25:30.:25:33.

about the leadership of the election for the Conservative Party

:25:33.:25:37.

five years ago was that David Cameron was actually in the centre

:25:37.:25:41.

of the Tory party to do trade with the Euro-sceptics and said if

:25:41.:25:47.

people like Bill Cash gave him their votes, he would withdraw the

:25:47.:25:50.

Conservative Party from the EPP and joined fringe groups with some real

:25:50.:25:55.

oddballs, whereas David Davies, the natural right-wing candidate, said

:25:55.:26:00.

I will not do something that daft. So you think changing that makes it

:26:00.:26:05.

more difficult for him? Certainly. But what I also suspect is David

:26:06.:26:10.

Cameron is in the same position as Harold Wilson 40 years ago, where

:26:10.:26:14.

Wilson decided he would go for a referendum about whether we stayed

:26:14.:26:19.

within Europe. He then dressed up a series of demands which were

:26:19.:26:23.

extremely easy to obtain because they were frankly cosmetic. He got

:26:23.:26:28.

them, declared victory and secured endorsement from our position in

:26:28.:26:32.

Europe. What has come up from the discussion you had with Nick

:26:32.:26:36.

Herbert a moment ago is once the euphoria of David Cameron's speech

:26:36.:26:41.

dies down, they will be a battle royal inside the Conservative Party

:26:41.:26:45.

about what exactly the demands are in that you cannot be inside the

:26:45.:26:50.

European Union if you do not accept some principle of the Common

:26:50.:26:54.

Agricultural Policy. Most of our farmers now accept that. There are

:26:54.:26:58.

some things over the working time directive, particularly as it

:26:58.:27:02.

affects junior doctors, are daft and we have been trying to get

:27:02.:27:06.

changes would Spain and Germany, but the idea that you can turn the

:27:06.:27:11.

whole thing upside down and say working 60 hours a week is OK is

:27:11.:27:19.

unattainable so detail will be critical. If your allies with the

:27:19.:27:23.

mainstream Conservative Party, if you allies, you would have a better

:27:23.:27:29.

chance of getting your way then? That is a side argument. Jack, I

:27:29.:27:33.

think you miss the two big points. First of all, the British people

:27:33.:27:40.

have not been given a say about our relationship with the EU since 1975.

:27:40.:27:44.

People want their say. They were promised it before over Lisbon and

:27:45.:27:49.

it was taken away from them. There is a strong feeling about that in

:27:49.:27:53.

the country and that has to be addressed. The important thing

:27:53.:27:57.

about now is that the British people will be involved in this

:27:57.:28:02.

situation and they will have the final say. Let me go back to

:28:02.:28:07.

Germany. The members of the eurozone, led by France and Germany,

:28:07.:28:12.

are going to come up with a number of proposals for a much more

:28:12.:28:18.

economic and monetary integration and with that, or possibly further

:28:18.:28:23.

political integration. Britain will not be part of that by choice. As

:28:23.:28:28.

you go to an ever-closer union in the eurozone, isn't it legitimate

:28:28.:28:34.

for Britain to say, we need to negotiate our opposition to a more

:28:34.:28:36.

semi-detached place while that eurozone is renegotiating its

:28:36.:28:42.

position to a much closer union? Look, the question to be negotiated

:28:42.:28:47.

is to have more competitiveness by structural changes, more

:28:47.:28:53.

possibilities to stop a bad Budget procedure, and site fiscal deficit.

:28:53.:28:59.

That is also the British position. This is not a question when it is

:28:59.:29:04.

debated between the 17th. The fiscal compact, which Britain

:29:04.:29:09.

refused to join us, was signed by 25 countries. 25 countries and

:29:09.:29:16.

Denmark is included, despite its opt in, and we have to see that

:29:16.:29:19.

this is a question for more or less all the European Union who wants to

:29:19.:29:23.

do with that and go forward with that and it is the question that

:29:23.:29:31.

Britain cannot then come and say, we want an internal market...

:29:31.:29:35.

would be grateful if you are dressed my question. It is a

:29:35.:29:40.

project we did five countries. the proposals that Francois

:29:40.:29:45.

Hollande and Angela Merkel will make in May this year for the June

:29:45.:29:48.

council in 2013 are fundamentally to do with that eurozone and the

:29:48.:29:52.

eurozone will get closer and closer together, and Britain will not be

:29:52.:29:56.

part of that. We will not be at the heart of Europe so what is wrong

:29:56.:30:00.

with renegotiating a more semi- detached relationship, given we

:30:00.:30:10.
:30:10.:30:11.

will not be in the core? Co you have silenced him altogether!

:30:11.:30:21.
:30:21.:30:28.

I think UKIP got a hold of the This is a distraction. We're not

:30:28.:30:34.

saying, never have a referendum. Certainly not. I read what Nick

:30:34.:30:39.

Clegg wrote this morning, thinking, I agree with Nick. Also I agree

:30:39.:30:45.

with Michael Heseltine. This is a distraction. It reminds me of

:30:45.:30:51.

budgets. If it is well received on the day, they are hanging out

:30:51.:30:55.

afterwards. Let's be clear, Ed Miliband at Prime Minister's

:30:55.:31:02.

Questions was explicit in ruling out a referendum, an in-out

:31:02.:31:06.

referendum. Douglas Alexander had to explain that is not what he

:31:06.:31:10.

really meant. It is a mess. It is not. It is clear he was talking

:31:10.:31:20.

about them. He mis-spoke. You could put it that way. What should

:31:20.:31:24.

Labour's position be in the referendum? My position is, if

:31:24.:31:30.

there were a referendum tomorrow, I would strongly say and advice my

:31:30.:31:35.

constituents to vote yes. I would do that, either without a

:31:35.:31:38.

renegotiation. Having started off sceptically about Europe, my own

:31:38.:31:45.

belief is that after four year -- after years in the European Union,

:31:45.:31:51.

it depends on our membership of the referendum. Should there be one or

:31:51.:31:57.

not? It is academic at the moment. Five years, you are talking about,

:31:57.:32:02.

who knows what will happen in five years. I will not say we'll never

:32:02.:32:10.

have one. There's a prom there! As clear as mud! We couldn't hear you

:32:10.:32:15.

- I apologise. We'll come back to you one day soon and hear what you

:32:15.:32:24.

have to say. Our apology from London. He looks as if he's sitting

:32:24.:32:32.

outside Glasgow University union. It is interesting to listen to

:32:32.:32:38.

British arguments. We got him in the end. Don't all shout at your

:32:38.:32:43.

television sets at once. How much is your MP worth? I can't hear the

:32:43.:32:48.

shouting yet! A survey revealed the majority of people questioned felt

:32:48.:32:52.

Members of Parliament deserved a 32% pay increase. Perhaps

:32:52.:32:56.

unsurprisingly though it was a survey of MPs. Do they have a

:32:56.:33:01.

point? An MP earns just over �65,000 a year. In a survey

:33:01.:33:04.

conducted by the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority,

:33:04.:33:11.

our politicians said this ought to be increased to more than �86,000.

:33:11.:33:17.

That compares to the average UK salary of �26,500. The chief

:33:17.:33:26.

executive of a medium-sized company earns �99,046. MEPs recently

:33:26.:33:36.
:33:36.:33:41.

We are joined by John Mann. Before we go - Scotland viewers are with

:33:41.:33:46.

us as well. They have been watching First Minister's first question.

:33:46.:33:51.

Why should you be worth three times the average salary? I am being paid

:33:51.:33:58.

twice as much as an MP for the past 15 years. As an MP? MPs are worth a

:33:58.:34:01.

reasonable salary. This is about relativetys. We have a situation,

:34:01.:34:05.

where British MPs are not particularly well paid compared to

:34:05.:34:10.

other MPs. They are paid a lot less than BBC political journlithss, who

:34:10.:34:15.

may or may not -- journalists who may or may not want to say how much

:34:15.:34:21.

you are paid, paid for by the taxpayer. One interesting thing is

:34:21.:34:25.

journalists making comments about MPs' pay are on the whole much

:34:25.:34:30.

better paid than MPs. Tell me what a reasonable salary is? I will not

:34:30.:34:35.

give you that, because we have now decided, as a Parliament, to

:34:35.:34:39.

happened this decision over to the Independent Parliamentary Standards

:34:39.:34:43.

Authority. What I think is sensible is rather than us going for an

:34:43.:34:47.

auction about all this, to say we had years and years of struggling

:34:47.:34:52.

to set a proper pay level for MPs ourselves. It was unseemly. It led

:34:52.:34:57.

to the development of the expenses system, increases by the backdoor,

:34:57.:35:02.

which was unacceptable. Better to hand it over and for them to decide.

:35:02.:35:07.

Meanwhile, I hope we will not get people coming out with these

:35:07.:35:13.

approaches. As I say, to repeat my point, I am not making a plea for

:35:13.:35:18.

myself. I enjoy a very high standard of living. My concern is

:35:18.:35:24.

younger MPs. Let's see what their salary is comparable to. Is the

:35:25.:35:30.

work you do less important of than than a CEO of a medium-sized

:35:30.:35:35.

business. It does not compare to anything else. There must be in

:35:35.:35:41.

terms of responsibility and status. We are representatives. We are

:35:41.:35:44.

representatives of the community of society. That is what we're meant

:35:44.:35:48.

to be. Therefore you cannot do those comparisons. Are we paid

:35:48.:35:52.

enough at the moment? �65,000, with the current recession, I say that

:35:52.:35:56.

we are. Do you agree with that? There is

:35:56.:36:01.

not a comparison to be made with other responsible jobs like a head

:36:01.:36:08.

teacher of a secondary school who could get paid between �79,000-

:36:08.:36:16.

�112,000 a year. There are comparisons to be made. You do set

:36:16.:36:22.

salaries which are comparable. By the way, Jo mentioned trade union

:36:22.:36:26.

General Secretaries. They would be paid six-figure salaries. These

:36:26.:36:32.

things are out there. My concern is this; the intake in 2010 of new MPs

:36:32.:36:38.

I thought was a higher level of intellectualal lapbt on both sides

:36:38.:36:46.

than anything I -- intellectual talent on both sides. My concern is

:36:46.:36:51.

it does not put off people in the future. You should be concerned

:36:51.:36:54.

about that, John Mann, the types you would like to see, they will

:36:54.:36:59.

not necessarily be bankers and barristers. If you want to

:36:59.:37:08.

encourage somebody who wants to own a mebg oak ker Sally they will not

:37:08.:37:14.

come into the -- salary, they will not come into the House of Commons.

:37:14.:37:17.

It is a nonsense to suggest that MPs come in for the pay and that

:37:17.:37:22.

what we need to do is attract greater people. It's for the

:37:22.:37:26.

electorate to decide. There's no shortage of competition. In fact,

:37:26.:37:31.

the problem in Parliament is we don't have enough people from

:37:31.:37:37.

enough walks of live. We don't have enough people in ordinary

:37:37.:37:42.

professions. What has happened is parliamentary intake - 90%

:37:42.:37:46.

graduates. A lot of people on both sides being subsidised either by

:37:46.:37:51.

their spouses or by family income. I don't think that is sensible.

:37:51.:37:56.

That's why I say, let's try and take the emotion out of this and

:37:56.:37:59.

leave it to the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority,

:37:59.:38:04.

which is for the first time ever, we have said we will not set our

:38:04.:38:08.

own pay. It is a really tricky issue. There's never a good time

:38:08.:38:13.

for it to be discussed. I think for the health of our democracy, just

:38:13.:38:18.

as - and I say again, this is an important issue - journalists who

:38:18.:38:22.

monitor us are paid considerably more than MPs. That's a decision

:38:22.:38:28.

which has been made by the.... all journalists. Certainly the ones

:38:28.:38:33.

who monitor us. And so what? It is about the attractiveness of

:38:33.:38:37.

people's careers. What is your view on this? Should MPs be paid more?

:38:37.:38:42.

No. I just think at the moment... What about attracting people from

:38:42.:38:47.

all walks of life. If you don't pay a reasonable salary all the smart

:38:47.:38:51.

people will go into other industries. That might be a wider

:38:51.:38:55.

issue about politics and the nature of the job. I think it is a bigger

:38:55.:38:59.

question about the sort of things that an MP now does. I think just

:38:59.:39:05.

at the moment when we have a downturn, where we have had pay

:39:05.:39:09.

freezes in the public sector, pay freezes in large parts of the

:39:09.:39:16.

public sector for a time.... This is historical, isn't it? Yes. To be

:39:16.:39:18.

talking about a substantial pay increase now could not be a worse

:39:18.:39:24.

time to be doing so. It is still in... Would you like to see it?

:39:24.:39:32.

Maybe this is something which could be looked at at a different moment.

:39:32.:39:39.

We're not properly recovered from the expenses scandal there a is a

:39:39.:39:43.

matter of confidence. To raise this issue now is extremely damaging. We

:39:43.:39:51.

have to look at the wider economy. They are not just having pay

:39:51.:39:56.

freezes, they are having falls in their incomes. It is not saying

:39:56.:40:00.

let's take a decision tomorrow. They are looking to not before the

:40:01.:40:04.

next Parliament. At some stage, this issue does need to be termed.

:40:05.:40:11.

You, as much as anybody else in the House of Commons, and John, as well

:40:11.:40:14.

other MPs agreed that the decision should be taken out of the hands of

:40:14.:40:18.

MPs and passed over to the authorities. You are out of step

:40:18.:40:22.

with most of your parliamentary colleagues? I probably am. It never

:40:22.:40:29.

stopped him before! Find me the care assistant... What about the

:40:29.:40:32.

General Secretary of the union? There are millions of industrial

:40:32.:40:37.

workers. Loads of care assistants, people like that. None of them are

:40:37.:40:42.

saying to me, oh, we have become an MP if you paid us more than �65,000.

:40:42.:40:47.

That is not the problem. They are paid a fair whack. Should members

:40:47.:40:53.

of a union be paid a six-figure salary. If it was my union I would

:40:53.:40:58.

get it reduced. Thank you. The union General Secretary is a

:40:58.:41:03.

worried man! Thanks. Come back and see us again. To

:41:03.:41:07.

immigration, because the chief inspector has condemned as

:41:07.:41:11.

unacceptable the discovery of backlogs of more than 16,000 cases

:41:11.:41:14.

at the UK Border Agency. Some of the unprocessed

:41:15.:41:18.

applications from people wanting to set until Britain, because their

:41:18.:41:22.

husbands and wives, that is a natural thing to do. They date back

:41:22.:41:27.

to more than a decade. Here is what the chief inspector said earlier

:41:27.:41:31.

and the minister for immigration, Mark Harper. In the cases that have

:41:31.:41:37.

been put into archive, for reasons either because people can't be

:41:37.:41:40.

traced, for example. We've looked at the checks that have been made

:41:41.:41:45.

and found that assurances that they have given to Parliament about

:41:45.:41:50.

regular checks being made have not actually been made. Clearly we

:41:50.:41:54.

inherited an agency with a lot of problems. We've a new chief

:41:54.:41:58.

executive, new management team. He is getting a grip of the agency. We

:41:58.:42:01.

are also very clear we would not be able to turn it around overnight.

:42:01.:42:04.

We are going through, working through these issues. I am

:42:04.:42:09.

confident that by the time we get through this Parliament, the agency

:42:09.:42:13.

will be in good shape. It is not an overnight fix. We are going in the

:42:13.:42:18.

right direction. We are getting a grip of these things and sorting

:42:18.:42:21.

them out. The Shadow Minister joins us now.

:42:21.:42:26.

Let me come to you first. You wrote in your local paper two years ago

:42:26.:42:33.

that the UK BA was close to clearing the backlog of almost

:42:33.:42:36.

500,000 cases and that things were getting better. What do you say

:42:36.:42:43.

now? It is a shambles, isn't it? is infuriating. It has been to

:42:43.:42:47.

successive Governments. Last week, I took part in a debate with Johm

:42:47.:42:53.

Reid about Civil Service reform and the machine -- Mr Read reetd about

:42:53.:42:57.

the Civil Service reform and the machinery and to bring people in to

:42:57.:43:02.

sort out the way it is run. John Reid said, not at all if you have a

:43:02.:43:05.

minister like me I can sort departments out and implied

:43:05.:43:09.

everything has been sorted out in the Home Office. That is not what

:43:09.:43:14.

we found. There have been systemic problems with UK BA, which Theresa

:43:14.:43:19.

May has been dealing with. She has made a big structural change by

:43:19.:43:23.

splitting that off with Border Force. We have new management in.

:43:23.:43:26.

There have been continuing problems. You heard Mark Harper. He is

:43:26.:43:31.

determined to tackle it. The UK BA, it is clearly in something of a

:43:31.:43:37.

mess. It is a dealing an historic backlog.

:43:37.:43:43.

It is growing... Cases date from 2003. The majority comes from since

:43:43.:43:49.

2010 and indeed the report makes clear that the backlog is growing

:43:49.:43:55.

by 700 a month and that it's the one category of the backlog stood

:43:55.:44:00.

at 14,000 last zep. If it is still grow -- last September. If it is

:44:00.:44:05.

still growing it is higher than that now. By the time you left

:44:05.:44:11.

office you sorted out Border Force? It didn't exist but UK BA was not a

:44:11.:44:18.

perfect organisation, to put it mildly! It is what we call "a

:44:18.:44:22.

British understatement." I am being very British here. You need

:44:23.:44:27.

intervenalist ministers. What the British public will get fed up with

:44:27.:44:31.

is endless speeches about immigration and remarkably very

:44:31.:44:35.

little dealing the nitty-gritty. There are other worrying things in

:44:35.:44:39.

the paper that was produced today, for instance saying there is

:44:39.:44:44.

inconsistentsy between the way that staff based in the UK from UKBA

:44:44.:44:49.

deal with a case, from the way they are dealt with overseas. That must

:44:49.:44:54.

be wrong. Would this not be an issue, in which you should put

:44:54.:44:58.

aside party differences, because neither of you have a great reortd

:44:58.:45:03.

in this and you share -- record in this and you share your experiences

:45:03.:45:09.

and have an agreed programme to put it right? Yes, but in the end you

:45:09.:45:14.

still need intervenalist ministers. That is the case I am making, thank

:45:14.:45:22.

you. My worry is that I don't think Theresa May has been sufficiently...

:45:22.:45:32.
:45:32.:45:42.

You don't know Theresa! The British people want to see

:45:42.:45:45.

their borders properly controlled and they have a view that both your

:45:45.:45:49.

parties in government have failed to do so so should you not put your

:45:49.:45:55.

differences aside and tried to sort it out on a consensual basis?

:45:55.:45:59.

Sharing the experience is important because these are management issues.

:45:59.:46:05.

They are not Dudu political decisions. There have been big

:46:05.:46:09.

management and systemic problems in his agency -- they are not down to

:46:09.:46:17.

political decisions. Accountability also needs to be addressed. Their

:46:17.:46:25.

numbers have come down very substantially actually. We could

:46:25.:46:29.

throw rocks but one particular one that I will throw, which is a

:46:29.:46:36.

bolder, is the fact they have cut the number of staff by 6,000! It is

:46:36.:46:42.

a fact! That is about allocation of resources, no. Allocation of

:46:42.:46:48.

resources by your lot, yes. I had dinner with codes CNN last week. I

:46:48.:46:51.

hope some of his diplomatic skills had rubbed off on May but clearly

:46:51.:46:56.

not -- Kofi Annan. A work you manage to avoid how much you were

:46:56.:47:05.

paid. Nobody asked. How much are you paid? Not enough! Not nearly

:47:05.:47:09.

enough! Thank you, Chris Bryant, it is time

:47:09.:47:13.

you left. It is an allocation of resources issue.

:47:13.:47:17.

There used to be a time when many thought of it as "the copper's

:47:17.:47:21.

party". Strong on law and order. Keen on getting "bobbies on the

:47:21.:47:24.

beat". But now this party is the senior partner in a coalition

:47:24.:47:27.

austerity government. And we have 20% cuts, massive changes to pay

:47:27.:47:30.

and conditions, plus the loss of 12,000 officers. The relationship

:47:30.:47:33.

between police and this party, the Conservative party, is no longer a

:47:33.:47:37.

happy one. David Cameron has always been

:47:37.:47:40.

supportive of the dedication and sacrifice of the police but equally

:47:40.:47:42.

that they are the last great unreformed public service, and that

:47:42.:47:47.

changing that was something personal. He had been right there

:47:47.:47:52.

when the Tories last tried it, and were faced down by police pressure.

:47:52.:47:55.

Now, the government is forging ahead with scale of reform not seen

:47:55.:47:57.

before, affecting pay, conditions, roles, the private sector, police

:47:57.:48:02.

and crime commissioners and cuts. All police pride themselves they

:48:02.:48:09.

are managing this process but it's been tough. It is always difficult

:48:09.:48:12.

when you see such a substantial reform programme because not only

:48:12.:48:16.

do we have to manage that and restructure and reorganise and cut

:48:16.:48:22.

20% out of the Budget all at once, without any of really clear

:48:22.:48:27.

overarching plan, and we also have to deliver the service. We cannot

:48:27.:48:30.

stop while we we organise. The private sector, which we are told

:48:30.:48:35.

we should look at more, tell me it is A-level and scale of change

:48:35.:48:42.

which many have absolutely no experience of -- it is at a level

:48:42.:48:47.

of change. They are doing it to the police service and not with the

:48:47.:48:57.
:48:57.:48:59.

police service. They need to engage. Policemen are suspicious of the

:48:59.:49:02.

reforms themselves, suspicious of the motives behind them and

:49:02.:49:07.

suspicious that at the end of this process they will not be a better

:49:07.:49:11.

service as a result. And there is the feeling that the government has

:49:11.:49:16.

made this a lot harder than it needed to be. Yes, it has left

:49:17.:49:20.

police officers feeling particularly not listen to and

:49:20.:49:23.

undervalued extent that this government does not particularly

:49:23.:49:27.

like the police service. Whether that is true or not is irrelevant.

:49:27.:49:31.

That is the perception as a result of the current implementation of

:49:31.:49:34.

the reforms. It's not hear-say some officers are

:49:34.:49:39.

angry as we all heard them say it. Home Secretary, you may not like

:49:39.:49:43.

this, but we in the police service and no longer trust you, end of

:49:43.:49:47.

story. And if it wasn't the Police

:49:47.:49:49.

Federation conference, it was a march by off-duty police that

:49:49.:49:53.

displayed a dismay we had not seen so publicly before. Inevitable, say

:49:53.:49:58.

the government's opponents. government thought they had

:49:58.:50:02.

developed policy but they didn't, it was it cliche, the last

:50:02.:50:06.

unreformed element of the public sector. To to the ignoring the

:50:06.:50:10.

reform that had been before and ignoring the fact that to do

:50:10.:50:14.

policing properly, they had to reform to keep up. You cannot have

:50:14.:50:18.

the technology of ten years ago used for policing today, so they

:50:18.:50:21.

are fundamental cliche was wrong and it just has got worse ever

:50:21.:50:24.

since. Government argue their changes will

:50:24.:50:28.

finally deliver a better service better suited to the modern UK.

:50:28.:50:31.

Both ACPO, the PSA and the Fed say their people will deliver because

:50:31.:50:38.

"that's what they do". But... is a question around the tipping

:50:38.:50:42.

point. How much more can you drive out of policing before it becomes a

:50:42.:50:47.

direct impact on frontline service delivery? We are close but at the

:50:47.:50:52.

moment we have maintained that service. But no question, frontline

:50:52.:50:55.

officers are working under more pressure and harder than ever

:50:55.:50:58.

before and that is why the salary has to match the demanding nature

:50:58.:51:04.

of the job. For Sir Hugh Aldous says that the reforms are pushing

:51:04.:51:09.

the police service to do tipping point -- so Hugh Orde. Perilously

:51:09.:51:13.

close to affecting frontline services. What do you say?

:51:13.:51:18.

course you have to ensure there are sufficient resources but we were

:51:18.:51:21.

told two-and-a-half years ago but the budget reductions for the

:51:21.:51:25.

police would have a catastrophic effect. You remember their

:51:25.:51:29.

campaigning, the Labour Party were doing it Bob le Brocq the says it

:51:29.:51:38.

is close to tipping point. -- were doing it... He says it is close to

:51:39.:51:43.

tipping point. Is he wrong? Crime has fallen substantially under this

:51:43.:51:47.

government and that is a credit to the police. They have actually been

:51:47.:51:52.

able to deal with this reduction in resources which is essential. The

:51:52.:51:57.

police cannot be exempt from the at. Is that essential to a massive

:51:57.:52:02.

restructuring of pay and conditions, police and crime commissioners,

:52:02.:52:08.

whilst simultaneously removing 20% of central funding from police?

:52:08.:52:13.

Isn't that too much? Central funding has not been reduced by 20%.

:52:13.:52:18.

Central funding has been reduced but the budget implication that is

:52:18.:52:23.

not 20%... I am saying their package? It is important to say it

:52:23.:52:29.

is not 20% funding reduction. Accountability is very important in

:52:29.:52:33.

public services. There was a feeling that there was danger of

:52:33.:52:36.

disconnection between the police and the public and greater

:52:36.:52:42.

accountability is valuable and what we sought to do was to end the

:52:42.:52:45.

decade of bureaucratic management of the police from the centre,

:52:45.:52:49.

which resulted in a lot of bureaucracy and targets, and

:52:49.:52:52.

substitute that for a local and democratic accountability, which

:52:52.:52:57.

has been a success in London because the mayor's responsibility

:52:57.:53:01.

for policing in London is welcome in London I think. A even though

:53:01.:53:06.

the turnout for the commissioners was appalling. Yeah, I think it

:53:06.:53:11.

will be a success. We have set up an independent review into pay and

:53:11.:53:15.

conditions. Police officers must continue to be well remunerated but

:53:15.:53:19.

there were issues about an 0 fashion system of pay and

:53:19.:53:24.

allowances that had to be addressed -- old-fashioned system. He tries

:53:24.:53:28.

to produce a system that will match pay according to skills rather than

:53:28.:53:32.

a system where you pay simply goes up every year regardless of your

:53:32.:53:37.

skills. Have you won the hearts and minds of police officers? It is

:53:37.:53:42.

tough. These are tough times and these are demanding reforms and

:53:42.:53:48.

they affect police officers' pay packets. As people across public

:53:48.:53:53.

services have been affected. The police are not alone in that. It is

:53:53.:53:58.

important we continue to say that the government continues to say how

:53:58.:54:03.

important the police are, that we do value the police, they do an

:54:03.:54:07.

important job... A but they have not heard that. They clearly said

:54:07.:54:12.

they think the government do not like them, so whatever you have

:54:12.:54:18.

said, it has not worked, has it? The perception from the police and

:54:18.:54:22.

the difficulty with making those reforms has not succeeded because

:54:22.:54:25.

they feel you do not like them, that you have put too much on them

:54:25.:54:31.

in one go and you have not won hearts and minds? There is an

:54:31.:54:33.

element within the police service and the Police Federation in

:54:33.:54:38.

particular that regarded everything as not challengeable and therefore

:54:38.:54:44.

any challenge was escalated into "this is an attack" and if you look

:54:44.:54:49.

back over the years, successive governments faced protests from the

:54:49.:54:52.

Police Federation, allegations that morale had never been so low and

:54:52.:54:56.

that this was an attack on policing and what the federation has had to

:54:56.:55:00.

realise is that the economic situation, the necessity to ensure

:55:00.:55:05.

that public services can be today's challenges, the importance of

:55:05.:55:08.

ensuring a strong relationship between the police and the public

:55:08.:55:12.

meant that these changes had to be made and I strongly believe that

:55:12.:55:17.

they are in interest of policing. You speak very passionately about

:55:17.:55:21.

this. Surprising you walk away from this. There are other reasons for

:55:21.:55:26.

that which I have spoken about before. But I will continue to

:55:26.:55:29.

support the government programme of police reform.

:55:29.:55:32.

With a big thaw on the cards, fear not my friends about melting snow

:55:32.:55:36.

and floods. We have on hand apparently a sophisticated flood

:55:36.:55:44.

defence system. And here it is. # Sleigh bells ring. Are you

:55:44.:55:47.

listening? # In the lane, snow is glistening.

:55:47.:55:48.

# A beautiful sight, we're happy tonight.

:55:48.:55:52.

# Walking in a winter wonderland. # Gone away is the bluebird.

:55:52.:55:56.

# Here to stay is a new bird. # He's singing a song, as we go

:55:56.:56:06.
:56:06.:56:06.

along. # In the meadow we can build a

:56:07.:56:09.

snowman. # Then pretend that he is Parson

:56:09.:56:13.

Brown. # He'll say: Are you married? We'll

:56:13.:56:18.

say: No, man. # But you can do the job when

:56:18.:56:26.

you're in town #. According to reports in today's newspapers,

:56:26.:56:31.

snowmen are the answer. Joining me now from the not very snowy slopes

:56:31.:56:34.

of Westminster is Phil Rothwell, flood risk manager from the

:56:34.:56:40.

Environment Agency. Can this be true? Should we be out buildings no

:56:40.:56:47.

men? I feel as cold as a snowman. I do not think they are the answer

:56:47.:56:53.

for stockholding snow back is a good thing. Snow holds a lot of

:56:53.:56:58.

water. But when the snow melts and goes into the river systems, it

:56:58.:57:02.

does cause some problems, particularly at the moment with

:57:02.:57:07.

lots of saturated ground. River levels are already responding to

:57:07.:57:16.

the snow melting. With heavy rain forecast, we could be imposed more

:57:16.:57:22.

flooding so building snowmen is not the answer. There is a bit of

:57:22.:57:28.

science behind this. If you compact snow, it is a lot slower to melt. A

:57:28.:57:32.

snowman on your lawn is the last thing to go when the snow

:57:32.:57:36.

disappears so yes, it does hold back the water, but you need a very,

:57:37.:57:41.

very, very great many of them before it makes any difference.

:57:41.:57:48.

are looking at one in the north, 17 ft tall. That is a public-spirited

:57:48.:57:55.

attempt! Can be papped of the country with a 17 ft snow men? --

:57:55.:57:59.

could we have pepper? It would be a spectacular sight but it would not

:57:59.:58:03.

do a great deal to reduce your flood risk. The better thing to do

:58:03.:58:08.

is to look at the agency's flood website to really assess the risk.

:58:08.:58:14.

So we do have some risk coming up? Yes, it is a series point. Rivers

:58:14.:58:21.

are very high and grunt is saturated -- series point. The

:58:21.:58:24.

ground is saturated. We are looking at river levels very carefully and

:58:24.:58:29.

if you are at all worried MPs look at the environment agency's website,

:58:29.:58:33.

where there is lots of useful website.

:58:33.:58:38.

That's it, folks. If you can't get enough Europe chat, then join me

:58:38.:58:41.

tonight on BBC One with Neil Hamilton, Laura Kuenssberg, Lowri

:58:41.:58:43.

Turner, Katherine Ryan, Shirley Williams, Michael Portillo and Alan

:58:43.:58:48.

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