13/05/2013 Daily Politics


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Politics. As David Cameron got itself into a pickle about Europe?


He has promised a referendum in 2017 but many in his party wanted sooner.


News this morning that the prime Minister has rounded on senior


Conservatives to call for Britain to leave the youth. We are asking if he


has lost control of his party. And it is not just days having a spot of


bother at the top. Messrs Miliband and Clegg are feeling the heat, too.


Is the NHS being privatised by the back door? We will be talking to


Britain top GP. And they are out, Chris Huhne and


Vicky Pryce are released from prison.


Dash Britain's top GP. With us for the first half of the


programme is the chair of the Royal College of GPs, clear Gerada.


Welcome to the programme. First, two severely disabled men are at the


court of appeal today in an attempt to change the law governing the


right to die. One of them is Paul Lamb, whose paralysis means that he


is physically incapable of ending his life. He wants a doctor to be


allowed to help him. If you were in a position and he asked you to help


them, what would you do? At the moment, it is against the law so


I've would not be able to help them. It is a difficult subject, very


emotive, with arguments on both sides. On the one hand, state


sanctioned death is difficult to think about but on the other hand,


we have this sad case of somebody who clearly understands and wants to


die. As the representative of 40,000 GPs, we are debating this at the


moment. We are debating whether medical bodies should have a view at


all and whether we should trump the man on the omnibus. Just like the


rest of the country, we're torn. Some want it, and some do not. It is


a difficult issue. But you are put in that position quite often.


Although you say that it is against the law, and it is against them for


a GP to actually help someone to die that position, but there is a grey


area. Somebody is in such pain and doctors must have been asked up


until now, could they give more pain relief, would they be able to give


more pills, perhaps, in the knowledge, even though it is never


said, that that person may then try to take one life. And yes, it is


very difficult. -- take their own life. It is very difficult to


predict when someone will die. Why would try to relieve someone's pain


and do everything I can to palliative against it. Whether would


deliberately invent -- inject someone with drugs that and you


would kill them is going through to fire. Even the GPs holding someone's


hand. Who should be responsible for changing the law? Should the


Parliament who makes the decision? think it should be Parliament.


Parliament should take the views of their constituents and discuss it in


Parliament. If it does happen, then doctors are going to have to shape


the governance. Let abortion, it should not be doctors who determine


it. -- like abortion. Should they not have more of a say given they


are on the frontline? I do not think we should have more of a sake. We


should have more to say on how it should happen, if it happens, but on


a personal level, we should not have any more of a saving you or the lady


that made me up. My view should not trump your view or the man on the


Clapham omnibus. Now it is time for our daily quiz. Today's question is,


which MP would win a House of Commons fight? According to a poll


Commons fight? According to a poll out this weekend. Is it David


Cameron, Theresa May, Ed Balls or Cameron, Theresa May, Ed Balls or


Jacob Rees-Mogg? And we will find out the answer at the end of the


show. You will be pleased to know that is not one for you. Spare a


thought for David Cameron. The Prime Minister has gone to America to talk


to President Obama about a trade deal between the United States and


the European Union. While he is out of the country, his party had taken


the opportunity to behave like naughty schoolchildren and have a


fight. Over what? Europe, of course. David Cameron thought counties party


down when he pledged to hold an in-out referendum on Europe in 2017.


But it was not enough. -- thought he had calmed his party down. Now he is


in a spot of bother keeping his class in order as more and more


backbenchers talk about Britain's future in the EU. There will be a


vote on Wednesday after some Tory MPs tabled an amendment which


criticises the Queen's Speech for not including any bill paving the


way to a referendum. And it is not just the usual troublemakers at the


back of the classroom making all the noise. The Education Secretary,


Michael Gove, and Defence Secretary, Philip Hammond, have


packed up, saying that they would opt to leave the EU if they render


random was held. -- is a referendum was held. Meanwhile, Boris Johnson


says that David Cameron must make clear that Britain is ready to walk


away unless the relationship with Europe is reformed. And with UKIP


buoyed by their success in local elections, and can David Cameron get


control of the classroom? Gary O'Donoghue gives us the latest. He


is certainly trying to get control of the situation because he has


bitten back at senior Tories who said that they would leave the EU if


there was a referendum tomorrow. Yes. He has accused them of throwing


in the towel. Essentially saying that they do not believe that he


could get a negotiated settlement. He has had a swipe at Lord Lawson,


the former Chancellor, and his own Cabinet members, Michael Gove and


Philip Hammond, saying that there is not a referendum tomorrow, so it is


a hypothetical question. The application of that, what is the


first rule of being a politician? Don't answer hypothetical questions.


He then goes onto say there be be a referendum if they win the next


general election. That is a way of saying that if you keep squabbling


in public over the tactics, then the public is not going to vote for a


divided party. There is a certain amount of irritation coming from the


Prime Minister. And also, of course, he faces the prospect on


Wednesday they thought in the Parliament by the on this most


polite amendment you will ever get. Tory backbenchers saying that they


regret the absence of a Referendum Bill in the Queen's Speech, please


may we have one. He is having to allow his ministers to abstain on


that for fear of resignations. And backbenchers are having a free rein


to vote with the amendment. It is interesting spin from Downing Street


this morning, talking about putting the best face on it as they possibly


can. The Prime Ministers apparently pleased that the spotlight is being


shone on his promise for a referendum, albeit in 2020. And as


he really intensely relaxed about the amendment? -- is he really. It


is inevitable. He knows it was coming down the line. He will argue


that this is a position of the Conservative party, so that is how


they can justify allowing the backbenchers to do what they like.


But they are in a coalition government, and it is not the policy


of the coalition government, therefore his ministers cannot vote


for this thing, so they will have two abstain or vote with the


government. In a sense, the arguments are out to that extent,


but exquisite for the time being. The problem is that the Conservative


party is a pretty Euro-sceptic party in Parliament. We know that. This is


not a Civil War, but it certainly feels like it.


Without is the Conservative MP, Peter Bone, one of the MPs who has


tabled the amendment. Emma Reynolds, the Shadow Europe Minister, and you


could later, Nigel Farage, also join me. The amendment that we have put


down, regretting that there has been no EU referendum, is the Prime


Minister 's policy. In America, I'm sure he is toasting what we have


done and I'm sure if he was not in America he would be supporting the


amendment. So we have a bizarre situation where backbenchers are


voting against the government's legislative agenda as it stands


because that is in effect what you're going to do. You think he


will be delighted? Even for the BBC, and know they are so roll Europe,


how you can possibly come to that conclusion... We will be voting for


the Queen's Speech. What we're saying... But not as it stands. You


want to amend it. We are regretting there is no EU Referendum Bill, and


the reason there is not is because the Liberal Democrats are blocking


it in the coalition. They are such a minority party, smaller than Nigel's


party. Why take any interest? Because they are part in the


government? -- part of the government. Malcolm Rifkind say you


are undermining the prime Minister's authority. -- says you are


undermining. We will see on the vote whether people vote for the


amendment or not. But you're going to lose. How could you possibly come


to that conclusion? Through the numbers. What is going to happen is


that most conservative members of Parliament will vote for it. Do you


know that? I hope. By the time we get to Wednesday, I hope that


ministers will be allowed to vote for it because it will be strange


not to vote for Conservative party policies. Are the Labour Party


really going to vote against it and tell everyone in the country


that... Well, they have said they are. They are are telling everyone


in the country that they are against the EU referendum. If they do that,


good news for me and the Conservatives, and good news for


Nigel. But it would be political suicide. What are you going to do?


What Peter bone has been doing for the last two years. We have been


very clear in consistent. We do not want to have a referendum now and we


also think that promising one in four Mac years will create great


economic uncertainty and a time when people are worried about living


standards in the economy. To be clear, they will vote against the


amendment? It beggars belief that the Prime Minister, the leader of


the government, is also -- is almost encouraging, and relaxed, about is


MPs voting against his government. You know that they are going to vote


for the amendment. Three Labour MPs. A small handful. We shall see on


Wednesday. The vast majority of Labour MPs... Are going to vote


against the referendum? They are going to. Why will come back to you.


You cannot win. I will tell you after the vote. -- I will come back


to you. Every member of Parliament will have two face his constituents


and say that he had voted for against the bill and do not think


there are many MPs in Parliament who want to vote against an EU


Referendum Bill. The point is that David Cameron has promised a


referendum in 2017 if the Tories win the election and if they win it


outright. Did you not trusted the pro-Minister? I Trust the Prime


Minister. Why do we need the amendment? This helps them achieve


their policy. We are seeing the government should bring forward the


bill. To go down a Private Members' Bill route is well and good, but


this should not be done by private members. The problem is that the


public do not believe the Prime Minister. What this amendment is


seeking to do is to try to bind his hand, may trip that he cannot go


back on the decision if he wins the election. What is happening in


Westminster really is quite small bear compared to the big European


debate. I think the dam is broken. Last week, in the wake of the local


election results, we saw three former chancellors of the exchequer


and one former Shadow Chancellor saying that the economic costs of


being in the US I'd weigh any potential benefit. That is a


seachange in the debate. Do you agree with the Prime Minister in his


criticism of those senior Tories who have said that the position of the


negotiation is hopeless? I have not seen that criticism. We have just


heard that the Prime Minister has said they are throwing in the towel


too early, people like Michael Portillo, Nigel Lawson and others,


who say that the point of renegotiation is not going to get


him anywhere. In the towel too early? My view years ago was that we


should try to re-negotiate and get it into a free-trade deal. I think


that is now bound to fail. So you agree with Nigel Lawson two


absolutely. There are two parties now, many people who believe we


should come out of Europe. Many people in the Conservative party and


many people in UKIP. If we could harness the two parties. What about


that? The problem is this. The Portillo's criticism of Cameron was


stinging but he doubted the sincerity. If you want to


re-negotiate membership of the European Union, you have two invoke


Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty. It is the only mechanism that exists to


get powers back to this country. As far as working with sitting members


of Parliament advocating is leading the EU, and there are Conservatives


and Labour people that advocate that position, I am open-minded on a seat


by seat basis to talk to people about cooperation. And are you?


take support from anyone. It is ridiculous when you have this


terrific vote in the last local election for Conservatives, who


argue go -- who are Euro-sceptic, and UKIP, Euro-sceptic. If we could


harness those forces, we would be moving the Europe debate forward


enormously. Is it happening? with David Cameron as leader. We


would not contemplate it. Is it happening on an individual basis?


no doubt there are Tory is a stations saying that the law was


changed two years ago and there is a provision now that one candidate


could have the endorsement of two political parties on the ballot


paper, and there are associations out there that want this, I


believe? Were? I think we're going to have to wait for that. Hang on,


you said very clearly. If I have a confidential conversation with


people, I'll leave that they are. The pace of the debate is moving


very quickly. I think we will have one of those seats very soon.


talking one or two, or are we talking ten? We're not talking lots.


To be honest, there are only about 20 members of the entire House of


Commons who believe that Britain should leave the European Union. The


rest till think, somehow, we can re-negotiate. If the number goes up,


and would be delighted, maybe they are all hiding. There are a lot of


members who believe that but may not have broken cover. That flies


against the idea that a vast number of Tory MPs are either secretly or


publicly wanting Britain to pull out right now. I never had any


discussions with Nigel about running as a joint candidate or anything


like that, but I'm no that the vast bulk of conservative members of


Parliament think it unlikely that the re-negotiation is going to work.


Therefore, they will vote for the EU. You don't trust the Prime


Minister and you don't trust him in the promise of renegotiation? Let me


say in his Europe speech he was deliberately vague about what he


meant by renegotiation. How. Labour Party take about vague. Ed Miliband


on Saturday gave a speech, you should read some of the peaches.


didn't understand it. Ed Miliband was clear on Saturday that the


Labour Party is a pro-European party but a pro-reform party. We want to


see reform of the EU. We want that see greater oversight of national


parties. We want to abolish the Strasbourg seat of the European


Parliament. We want to see a growth commissioner within the European


Commission focussing on jobs in growth. Do you support, do you


support David Cameron's position then? I said we are in favour of


reforming the EU from the inside and that we are against this arbitrary


promise of a four-year period in which you have great economic


uncertainty and a ref dim at the end. Does Labour rule out promising


a referendum? We are not in favour of a referendum now and not in


favour of a referendum at an arbitrary point in the future. We


would have a referendum if there were a transfer of power from


Westminster. That's in law, we know that. That's going to happen any


way. Do you think on a scale of one to ten that Labour will prom pis


some sort of referendum in the run up to the election? -- promise some


sort of referendum in the run up to the election? The Miliband speech is


going to make it easier for us to get Labour votes. I'm so pleased I'm


a GP and not a politician. We debate things in a different way. Sometimes


I think we're going back to a nostalgic past. My sones is we're


far better part -- sense is that we are better part of a larger club


rather than being isolated as Little Britain. But good luck to you all.


Want our democracy back. If this club was democratic there might be


arguments for it. But it clearly isn't. We may need to sort out of


the irritating issues such as the 40-hour European time directive but


the idea that we can go backwards an be Little Britain in the world of


globalisation is nonsense. I don't want to end on obsessing about


Europe but let's end it there. Thank you to the three of you. Who could


forget the rum pus over the Government's reform of the NHS in


England. Doctors foaming at the mouth, apparently Romola Garai, the


Lib Dems feeling queasy and the GPs are meant to create more competition


between different providers of health care. Critics like our guest


claim it's privatisation by the back of the surgery door. But is it?


Here's Adam to complain what's been happening.


John's come for a hearing test but not at a hospital at his local


Specsavers. Could the NHS learn a thing or two from places like this?


Definitely. It's something the High Street opticians has been doing


since 2006. It's free at the point of use. It's free at the point of


delivery. You would come along and have your hearing aids fitted here


as you would in the hospital. The difference is you come into the


local community to have that qualified service performed.


Involving organisations that aren't necessarily part of the NHS was a


big part of the Government's changes to the Health Service in England.


They've given more power to groups of GPs to buy services for their


patients. We all know how controversial that's been. The


latest row focussed on some paperwork called section 75, the


part of the legislation that talks about competition. People like


Professor Lindsay Davies from the faculty of public health are worried


that the way it's written GPs will have to put everything out to


tender. We do think competition has a role to play in services. It does


test things. It does make sure that providers are doing the best they


can and we're getting best value. But this takes it far too far.


Majority in the House of Lords felt the same way. They tried to have the


regulations rewritten earlier this year. But the Commons changed them


back and now it's the law. Supporters of the Government say


there's been a whole lot of scaremongering. I think a lot of


people have used it as a reason to talk about privatisation of the NHS.


It's not about privatisation. It's about encouraging people to think


more about different services, pleurality of provision and whether


patients are getting the best value and quality and whether taxpayers


money is being used wilesly. patients might start seeing a


difference soon. From last Mott changes to the NHS have been rolled


out to every area England which means a doctor near you is wondering


whether a company like Specsavers could be doing even more.


With us is the Conservative MP Chris Scidmore who serves on the Health


Select Committee. Thanks for joining us. Does the bill force new clinical


commissioning groups to put all services out to tender. No, not at


all. One of the issues that we've had is there's a lot of


scaremongering. These rules, section 75, is only an extension of what was


in place for existing PCTs from 2006 onwards. All we're doing is creating


a level playing field and making sure all health providers have this


obligation. How you see it? You're wrong. It isn't an extension. It was


guidance before. Now it's enshrined in law. I don't think particularly


discussing section 75 will interest many people. What does interest is


the issue about have we got privatisation through the back door.


The last word on that clip tells us we have. The word was "company". If


you take privatisation as moving state resources into the full profit


or not for profit sector that is privatisation. The debate before has


been, as in this clip, if you don't pay for it, therefore it isn't


privatisation. It is. It's removing resource that's currently belong in


the state sector into the for-profit. The profits that


Specsavers make or Harmony make will not go back into the state, they


will go into shareholders. That's the definition of privatisation.


Ever since Ken Clarke purchase the provider split people have bandied


around privatisation. The NHS is still. There it's taxpayer funded


and it works in the best interests of patients. The specific question


which does that mean that those service that's are put out, that is


extended, it is enshrined in law that it will happen more and more


which is why people think it's privatisation. We've had a situation


where doctors are able to do private practice in terms of a long time.


Not alongside their NHS practice. No? Not at all. You can't have a


hospital doctor seeing a patient in an NHS hospital and charging that


patient. You can now, with the change in the regulations. Can you


earn up to 49%. You have never been allowed to do that. GPs have never


been allowed to earn more than 10% of our income through private work.


. This is an historic issue. Centres opened up services and patients like


them. About the quality of services? There are an argument which says


does the patient care about how it's provided, who is providing it? They


are not paying it when they access the service itself and if it's of


high quality, does it mat sneer does mat -- Does it matter?We know


that competition and markets increase costs. It reduces choice


because you get smaller organisations being swallowed up.


You reduce trust because you don't know whether the service you're


offered is something you need. In the end, we all lose, the taxpayer


loses because in the end I have more cost an the individual will lose.


It's not going to be a big bang. It's going to be tae very slow burn.


-- it's going to be a very slow burn. You haven't seen the end of


the NHS on April 1, 2013, but we've seen the end of the NHS being part


of a system that plans and delivers care within a state system. Do you


not think that there's time to change? That there's a lot of waste?


No, there isn't. We've been bandied about, there's waste in every


system. If you look at the biggest health market in the world which is


the States, it has the double whammy of the worst health outcomes at the


great greatest cost. We have an ageing population. Competition isn't


the way of dealing with that. provides innovation. The monopoly at


the moment... There is no evidence that if you privatise you increase


innovation. There's no evidence. Privatisation won't make people


younger. It's not privatisation, the P word that you're bandying around.


It's when you take an entire service out into the private sector, like


with the railways. How is differing -- delivering hearing aids in


Specsavers not the same? It's like glasses being taken out. It's


delivered better services. We have remember NHS glasses and look at the


quality now. Once you have opened up a playerality of service and the


cost of -- plurality of service and the cost. I'm sure Specsavers do an


excellent job. The question is what is your definition of privatisation.


Mine is removing state resources, ie my taxpayers money and putting it


into a for-profit or not for profit organisation why I or the NHS cannot


determine how that money is spent. There's no evidence that it doesn't


care. Opening it up to new providers which did start under Labour, under


Tony Blair. Due disagree with it them snow I say a scourge on both


their houses. What has happened is the dismantling of an incredibly


effective service, the National Health Service, with a thousand cuts


and it has been going on and this current one is, I suspect, the final


explosion. Let's talk about access. You don't agree in terms of what is


privatedisation and what isn't. Let's look at, we've talked about


quality and there isn't conclusive evidence. What about access. Taking


the example of Specsavers, things on the High Street make it easier for


people to access these sorts of things? Yes of course. There's a --


as a GPs surgery we're on the High Street. You don't necessarily need a


private service. Of course we need time prove access. My argument is


there is no evidence whatsoever that competition improves the outcome for


patients in the end. What do you say to that? What evidence is there?


Going round looking at the new GP clinical commissioning grooms and


looking at the excitement that -- groups and looking at the excitement


that GPs have to be able to innovate and make decisions on behalf of


their patients. It's notlet first time -- not the first time. I was


chair of an organisation in the late 9-0s in south London. We've had lots


of opportunities to hold our own budget. On the whole GPs prefer to


be in the consulting room seeing patients. On the Queen's Speech,


while we have you here, what about Government's plans to ask doctors to


check the immigration status of patients because that's the


implication of what's suggested. Right. As I said over the weekend, I


don't think doctors should be the borders agency. And they shouldn't


be the new tax collectors in receiving money from patients who we


deem or have been deemed as not being entight tolled free health


care. This is something I've campaigned in Parliament on. I'm


happy about this. It's a small A money, but lots of people... Should


GPs make those decisions or ask those questions? I think, we either


have a situation where we have some sort of unit in the department which


actually might pool resources. There is an issue of duplication. The


Government will review and look at the options, which is the right


thing to do. It may well, we don't know what the scants of the problem


is, we -- extent of the problem is. We have looked at estimates from one


million to one billion. We don't know. I worry we're trading the same


anecdotes and when you look at the problem it's a very small proportion


of NHS spend. Probably less than 1%. Thigh for coming in. -- thank you


for coming in. Now let's have a quick look at the week ahead. Later


today, President Obama welcomes David Cameron to the White House,


expect Europe and Syria to be on the agenda. MPs will debate the Queen's


Speech this week. And as we've been hearing, expect a vote on Wednesday


on the lack of an EU referendum. It's the Police Federation annual


conference. That will probably mean Theresa May will turn up and get


heckled. On Thursday, it's the ballot of Private Members' Bills,


well joining us from College Green now is Andrew Pierce from the Daily


Mail and Kate Devlin from the Herald. Welcome to both of you.


Andrew Pierce, David Cameron is hitting back at those senior Tory


MPs who say renegotiation is hopeless. You can't make it up with


the Conservative Party. David Cameron was the leader who thought


he would bury the issue of Europe as a divisive factor in his party. It


looks like it may bury him. I've been talking to MPs who you wouldn't


expect to necessarily be supporting this motion this week, regretting


the absence of any Europe in the Queen's Speech. On the left of the


party, they say it's simple we have to pull out of Europe unless there's


a massive renegotiation. It's up and running now. I don't think Cameron


can put the Jeanie back in the can put the Jeanie back in the


bottle. Do you agree? How is it going to look on Wednesday when


you've got 100 or so or more, if Andrew Pierce is right, voting


Andrew Pierce is right, voting Andrew Pierce is right, voting


will look bad. Downing Street have had a number of these rebellions in


recent years and there are signs that they are starting to get that


and managing them. -- they are starting to get better at managing


them. Saying that they are free to vote against it frees David


Cameron. It means he will not have to sack people after the vote as he


had in the past. That said, those who will vote for the amendment are


surprised that Downing Street is surprised that the Euro-sceptics are


still pushing this issue. There has to be something with the take a step


back and try to decide how they are going to deal with these things over


the long-term. How do you deal with it? The thing is, it is the prime


Minister's fault. Before the Queen's Speech she talked about putting


something in the speech about Europe and then he backed off. He has been


sending out conflicting signals. And he has to get his backbenchers a --


in opportunity to sound off. They have a problem with UKIP and it is


not just about UKIP. Tories think the relationship with the European


Union is not fit for purpose and they want out unless they can be a


major re-negotiation. There is one advantage for Cameron in this latest


bout of infighting. At least the Tories can say that they are the


only party that will give the referendum, unlike Labour and the


Lib Dems who are implacably opposed. What about the public? Is


there this fear of obsessing about Europe at Westminster? Yes. The Tory


leadership says that they are trying to appeal to lots of different


people and that they have to try to remember that. So while they are


appeasing backbenchers, they had to appeal to normal people up and down


the country, some of whom are feeling the same way as the Tory


rebels, that they want some kind of in-out referendum. But a significant


proportion of them are baffled that the Tory party appears to be turning


itself -- tearing itself apart again over this. But they are very good at


it! The art experts. We have just had Nigel Farage on the programme,


saying that there are discussions going on between number of Tory


associations and UKIP in terms of a shared platform. Are you hearing


that? Absolutely. I'll was thought that it would happen if they did


well in the County Council elections. Almost certainly in my


view they will win the European elections next year. I'm no many


Tories who are going to vote for UKIP. There will be situations where


Nigel Farage Wilmot put out a candidate. David Cameron is quick to


have to get serious about this and talk to a man he has dismissed as a


nutcase. Thank you both. Enjoy the rest of the week.


Joining us for the rest of the programme are three very normal


people, former deputy leader, Mark Crick Beckett -- former Labour


deputy leader, Margaret Beckett, Lord Forsyth and Charles Kennedy.


Let's move on. Two members of the Cabinet has said that they will vote


to quit the European referendum -- European Union if there was a


referendum tomorrow. Would you add your voice to that? I would want us


out if there was a vote, not because we are leaving the EU, but because


they are leaving us. They are going down the path of further economic


integration and that will not make Europe competitive. You can see the


misery being caused in countries like Spain where youth unemployment


is that 60%. The Archbishop warns today of civil unrest. We cannot go


down that track. We need to see our future in the global economy and be


free to determine our borders and laws. Do you think that Nigel Lawson


was right to say that re-negotiation is pointless? Yes.And David Cameron


says you are throwing in the towel too early and undermining his


position. I think there is confusion here. If we say that we're Article


50 of the treaty to leave the union and renegotiate our position, I


think that is credible. The idea that you could get the whole of the


rest of Europe to do a special deal for written, many of them would have


to have their own referendums to achieve it. They would not want


their own particular changes to the club. I think it is wrong. To use an


analogy, I think David Cameron thinks he can persuade the golf club


to play tennis. His negotiating position is impossible, because he


is saying that if he does not succeed, they will continue to play


golf. He has not said what he would do if he did not succeed. He said


that in the event of not being successful, he would still campaign


to remain in the EU. Do you Trust him to deliver on his promise of the


referendum in 2017? -- to deliver a referendum in 2017. The Trust him to


deliver? I do. -- do you Trust him to deliver. Why does the need to be


an amendment by Tory backbenchers to get it enshrined in law? That is a


separate question. What is happening here is that Tory backbenchers are


frustrated that the British people are not being given the opportunity


to have a vote on whether not we should remain in the EU. But they


are in 2017. That is a long way away. That is a long period of


uncertainty, and also it depends upon the Conservatives winning the


next election. We need to get back some of those people that are voting


for UKIP, you're going to win the next election. So you are completely


persuaded that there should now be a referendum, or at least a mandate


referendum which would guide any future negotiations for David


Cameron? I think there should be an in-out referendum under think the


Prime Minister should be getting himself around Europe now, trying to


get a deal for us if we leave. lost control of the party over


Europe? Not at all.It sounds like it listening to you. He's got it


wrong in terms of promising a referendum in 2017 and the


backbenchers are right to try to table an amendment because they do


not Trust them to deliver a referendum in 2017. He seems to have


lost control. I am one of these old-fashioned people who think the


executive should take note of what Parliament thinks and not the other


way around. Is it difficult at this point, should Ed Miliband be ruling


out any referendum on Europe at this point? At this point, yes. I think


issued and he is, because there are huge problems in our economy and


leaving Europe is not going to help to solve those problems. What the


government should be trying to deal with is getting growth and doing


something to bring in more jobs. The minute we start saying that we are


going to leave the European Union, there are literally millions of jobs


in this country at stake. When I was Secretary of State for trade and


industry, the Japanese motor industry, in one voice, was


absolutely clear. They were clear that if we leave Europe, they will


leave the UK. But by not stating whether there should be a


referendum, why not give people the chance to say yes or no? That would


create certainty? We are the only party you are a gay people the


chance to say yes or no. For my part... You campaigned for people to


leave. I did. Let me draw your attention to the fact that there


were some differences. For example, we still had strong ties with the


Commonwealth. We still have a different relationship with Asda.


All that has gone. -- EFTA. So Labour should not promise a


referendum now or in the run-up to the election? We will have to take a


decision then. My heart sinks at the thought that we should commit


ourselves as an incoming government to the first priority of engaging in


a wholesale diversion of a referendum on Europe. We should be


doing concentrating on turning the economy around. What do you say to


that? I think marketers write about the importance of the economy and


jobs but the idea that we will not have access to European markets and


we could not have a free train -- free trade agreement, is just


wrong. Did not that.Our future lies with South America and China, the


growth parts of the world that we need to be able to sell our goods


and services to. Our -- we are being completely hamstrung by regulation


and controversy. Our wiki Mac no. are we? No. The British civil


service has a panoply of things that they want to add on to this bill,


and the addict on the back of the European initiative, and then they


blame Brussels. Successive governments have been guilty of


this. As far as we are hamstrung, a lot of this is home-grown and has


not just come from the continent. But you fought election -- you


fought in the lection, and the Clegg attacks Gordon Brown for not giving


people the referendum. -- fought and collection. The Liberals are holding


the Prime Minister hostage to prevent him from delivering what you


stood for delivering an in-out referendum. If he is a hostage, it


is at his own making. But you would not support this. We have always


said, have a referendum if you have a treaty change, or further proposed


change. And that is agreed. But the Liberal Democrats are, according to


the Conservative leadership, holding the government to account,


preventing them mentioning it in the Queen's Speech. Oh dear. 60 Liberal


Democrats in the House of Commons holding the conservative


establishment hostage? The Prime Minister in the Tower of London?


What nonsense. The reason Cameron is in trouble is his first big


strategic mistake during the Tory readership campaign, to pacify the


David Davis Euro-sceptics, which he did not need to do, as it turned


out, he gave this guarantee which has left the Tories isolated. In the


European Parliament, they are isolated, along with right-wing


individuals, and of mainstream thinking. What has changed is that


they were handing out leaflets asking people to demand an in-out


referendum, during your petitioning, what has changed since then and


now? What has changed is that we have a coalition government and


secondly we have three years of an agreed position that government,


these are the Europe. In the government's position, the coalition


government's position is not to favour an in-out referendum now.


That is what David Cameron thinks and says and that is what Nick Clegg


thinks and says. You were saying that they are not telling the


truth? They speak with one voice as does William Hague. You cannot deny


that. Is Michael Portillo right when he implies that David Cameron is


faking Euroscepticism? I think he is Euro-sceptic. He is trying to keep


the core mission together and he has been put in a position by the


Liberals to renege on their promise at the general election and proved


between coalition country. Why are they not promising a referendum


now? We're not reneging on anything, nothing whatsoever. We entered into


a coalition government and I was a sceptic on that issue. But we


entered into it. We published an agreement and the agreement on


Europe was the position that the government are following. Nobody has


reneged on anybody. The only people reneging on the 100 or so, and we


will see how many tomorrow night, the Tory backbenchers who will not


tour the line of their leader. People like you, are pouring


paraffin on the Tory fire. The Tory Euro-sceptics do not trust David


Cameron to deliver. That is what it comes down to and that is what they


should be voting on tomorrow. That is what they are saying, we're not


sure we like this guy and we do not trust him. Do you trust David


Cameron? Of course they do. -- of course I do but I think he has to


choose between keeping Nick Clegg happy and giving the country what it


once. All political parties are campaigning on this. The UKIP result


shows... There was a quote from David Cameron a few hours ago.


Accusing his colleagues of throwing in the towel too early.


annoyances with his own party. about the case for re-negotiation?


Would've thought the Lib Dems would be part of a government that is


going to try to repatriate these powers. You happy about that?


not have any difficulties with that. We have argued for years that you


want a Europe that is more decentralised and that is both that


the rubble, not in the European use of the word, but in the North


American sense. -- that is more federal. More power devolved from


the centre to the regions and nations of Europe. Tories should not


have a problem with that. When the Prime Minister made his speech, Nick


Clegg offered to translate it from double Dutch into English. And he


made it absolutely clear that he was not supporting the prime Minster's


line of re-negotiation. They all wanted the top job and they got it


but it's not always a bed of roses. # knew you were trouble when you


walked in # on you now


# took me to places I'd never been # you put me down


# knew you were trouble when you walked in


# on you now # took me to places I'd never been


# I'm lying on the cold hard ground Yes, gazing through the prism of the


weekend press you'd be forgiven for thinking they're all on shaky


ground. Let's start with Ed Miliband, Margaret Beckett. You


backed him when he was running for the Labour leadership, are you


pleased with how he and it's turned out. Yes, very.Are people not? Why


are the polls saying he is holding back the party? He's had a terrible


press from day one. There might be a reason for that? Yes, one reason


that nobody ever talks about, the greatest sin in politics is to do


what none of the political commentators expected. No


commentators expected him to win and he did. They were insulted. With the


help of the reasons, that was the only reason. It was a technical win,


if you like. They can say what they like, but none of them expected it.


They were taken by surprise and they didn't like it because they assumed


that David was going to win. It was a foregone conclusion. Hasn't he won


them over? He is winning them over. He? Yes, he's already improving in


the polls. At a very, very slow rate. I mean the party... Let's not


exaggerate it. In terms of personal approval ratings, he's gone up


according to the polls one point since he game leader. Bearing in


mind what we've been discussing over Europe and the economy, one might


have thought he'd have improved his ratings considerably more. I think


considering the scale of the defeat that we had at the last election the


fact that he's held the party together. The party is, I think I'm


right in saying, certainly as united, more united certainly than


the Tory party, possibly than the liberals. Ed himself is doing


extremely well. In my opinion, and bear in mind I've watched more Prime


Ministers Question Times from the chamber than any of the rest of you,


I think Ed is consistently winning where the leader of the Opposition


is never supposed to win. The cards are always stacked against you.


that important in terms of public perception? It's important in the


House and in the end, it gradually feeds through into public


perception. He had a mountain to climb. He's doing extremely well. He


is taking nothing for granted. Some of the party grandees don't agree,


Peter Mandelson is one of them, not a fan of one-nation Labour. We've


heard from Lord Sainsbury, "Mr Average". He said that about all


three of them, all three of the party leaders. My impression is, I


was surprised because I like David Sainsbury he was a good Science


Minister, as I would judge. I have a lot of respect for him. I thought,


why on earth has he suddenly decided to make this statement. From what I


can make out, he has a book coming out and he gave an interview about


the book. Was the journalist interested in the book? Possibly not


as much as he was in getting him to say something about the leadership.


It's not even a secret at all. David Sainsbury supported David Miliband


and was disappointed he didn't get the leadership. Charles Kennedy, we


heard Michael Gove perhaps mischieviously accusing Nick


Clegg... Characteristically.Your word, showing a bit of leg over the


child care policy. It is a bit strange, is it not, for Nick Clegg


to have come out at the 11th hour with his disagreement over what is a


crucial part of child care reforms? I wasn't party to the maccination


that's led up to this. They've been discussing this for months.


component of a Queen's Speech I haven't been in Government, both


colleagues here have. These processes take months and months


before they actually reach the printed page that's put in front of


the sovereign. So it is surprising as to what went wrong at the


crossroads. It is, I don't know the answer to that. I can only assume,


this is an interPrio takes that the -- interpretation, that the detail


as oppose to theed principle, of what was agreed, when that was


fleshed out by the Conservative Cabinet minister responsible, that's


when the alarm bells started ringing in camp Clegg. That's my assumption.


Do you reject the assertion that there is challenge going on


behind-the-scenes in terms of his leadership? Or any talk or rumour


about it? I'm not a good source because given that I trusted people


myself a number of years ago in these matters, that was a great


mistake on my part. But from the outside looking in, I would think


there is no truth in this. I think it is Michael trying to kick up a


bit of sand to deflect attention from the on ongoing embroils of the


Conservative leadership. I think it is a bit of mischief. If there were


any truth in it, and I don't think that there is, my advice to the


chaps would be send for the men in white coats. I see. The speculation


is that you do know is that Vince Cable would be the man to replace


Nick Clegg. And even he himself has said if the opportunity arose it


would be something that he'd consider. Do you think there is some


truth to Vince Cable perhaps beginning to put feelers out for a


replacement? I don't think so, no. I feel a bit bruised because my name's


not been mentioned at all. We can reveal, I'm hearing in my ear.


get a cheap free hit for tomorrow, can I disspell the notion that I


have in any way been approached. I am above the battle. Would you like


Vince to replace anybodying? No, I don't want nb to replace anybodying.


We have a -- Nick Clegg, we have a liberal as the Deputy Prime


Minister. Unless we need our heads examined don't rock the boat.


firmly in the House of Lords. king across the water. David Cameron


wasn't in the picture, who would be your ideal person? I'm not going to


answer that question. Why not?It would get me in great trouble. I


will say that the reason Ed Miliband is in difficulty is because he has


not acknowledged the economic shambles that Labour were


responsible for. Have to leave it there. We hear Chris Huhne, which we


said earlier, and his wife Vicky Pryce have been released from prison


this morning half their convictions this year for perverting the course


of justice. Here are the pictures of the vans taking them home. Chris,


where are you and where is Mr Huhne? Can you hear me? Can he hear me?


There's Chris Huhne. We can see pictures here. Chris Huhne might be


about to make a statement. Let's see if he's going to say something.


calm down everybody, all right. OK? I've got a simple thing to say and


I'm not going to saying in more after that. So please you know, calm


down everybody. All right? First of all, thank you very much for coming.


I would just like to say once again, as you know from the night that I


was sentenced, I said that I was very sorry for what I'd done. It has


been a humbling and sobering experience. I'd like to thank all of


those who have written to me, hundreds of letters that I've had


and all my family and friends who've stood by me. And I would also just


remind you that I've served only part of my sentence and therefore


it's not appropriate to say more. I'd now like to get on, get back to


home and continue with my life. Thank you for coming.


REPORTER: Has prison been good for you?


We can see pictures of Chris Huhne and his partner trying to move away


from the cameras, who have been following him to get a statement as


he has arrived back having been released from prison. He said there


himself that there are strict conditions, because he didn't serve


the full term. As a result of that, he can't say any more at the moment.


I think he'll be lucky if he thinks the press will leave him alone at


any time and the same for Vicky Pryce. She was also released this


morning. She said she would return to work as an conmiffed. Charles


Kennedy, it's going to be difficult for Chris Huhne to return to


anything in public life. Is that ruled out all together?


necessarily. Chris is a very robust, both very robust characters and very


good people as a matter of fact. Strong social conscience about them


and very, very intelligent and successful in their respective


fields. I do slightly question and this is not a partisan point at all,


but the price that they've paid, which is a heavy one for what was


the offence... But they did plead guilty to perverting the course of


justice. I'm not denying that, if you allow me to complete the


thought. Yes, they have to pay a heavy price and they have done


so.ive wonder from the point of view of society would their talents not


have been better placed instead of being detained, as it were for a


couple of months, actually be sent into under privileged schools to do


some practical good over that period as well. I'm not saying they should


get special treatment, but I think it raises a serious question of a


penal policy. Do you say to that? Has it just been a waste of money in


that sense and it could have been their time and punishment,if you


like, could have been done in a more effective way? It's an interesting


thought. My impression has been from fairly early on in this case, the


courts themselves and the legal profession take this whole issue and


this case incredibly seriously, far more seriously probably I'm afraid


than any of us do. For them, the gravity of what was done is probably


much greater than most people among the public would think and so I


think it was, it's not really any point in considering whether it


might have been better handled a different way because it never would


have been. Do you think it was the best way to treat them, bearing in


mind what they did and the fact that Chris Huhne pleaded guiltedy to


perverting the course of justice and it is a serious offence? There was a


Scottish judge used to say perverting the course of justice is


worse than murder because it's murdering justice, which is a rather


extreme position. I feel very sorry for both of them actually. I don't


know Chris particularly well. I do know Vicky Pryce. They've paid a


very high price indeed for something that was clearly wrong and I just


wish them the best. And they clearly have to build their careers. I think


what happened to their familiuals horrendous. People may say they


brought it upon themselves. They will. But anyone with the slightest


amount of human empathy and read the e-mails and watched that and not


felt sympathy. Today he's behaved with great dignity as she has. I


think the press should leave them alone. I felt particularly sorry for


Vicky Pryce, if you've ever seen a notice about speeding, it says who


was driving the car? You don't get another form unless you have said


someone else is driving the car. He had already done something which put


his whole career in jeopardy by the time she was asked to put her


signature on the form. Do you think the Liberal Democrats will hope that


Chris Huhne will quietly disappear into obscurity? No, I don't see an


elecheed future for him. No, just generally that he would just...


think Chris is the kind of individual, whatever he does next,


he'll produce ideas. They will feed their way into our policy making


process, I'm quite sure. Just very quickly, we had a question about


which MP would win a fight according to a poll. Any ideas? David Cameron,


Theresa May, Ed Balls, Jacob Rees-Mogg. I know it was bizarre. It


was Ed Balls. This kind of fight, not a political fight. I can see the


confusion there. That's all for today. Thanks to our guests. We will


have to tell them about the quiz. The one o'clock news is starting on


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