15/01/2014 Daily Politics


15/01/2014

Andrew Neil and Jo Coburn with live coverage of Prime Minister's Questions and the latest political news, interviews and debate. With Shailesh Vara and Caroline Flint.


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Morning, folks. This is the Daily Politics. His latest poll ratings

:00:38.:00:45.

don't make happy reading, but the Labour leader will be hoping his

:00:46.:00:48.

latest campaign will prove a hit with the public. Mr Miliband's

:00:49.:00:51.

decided to wage war on the bankers again, and let's face it, that's

:00:52.:00:55.

always popular with the public. He's demanding the Government step in and

:00:56.:01:00.

veto bumper bonuses at RBS. George Osborne wants to fix the engine that

:01:01.:01:03.

drives Europe. He's been wanting to give it a major service for a while.

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This morning he warns of economic catastrophe if the EU fails to

:01:08.:01:10.

reform. Could PMQs hold some surprises this week? Tune in for all

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the action at midday. And he's been dubbed France's John

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Major. The grey man of French politics. How wrong they were. We'll

:01:19.:01:22.

be trying to delve into the secret life of President Hollande. It could

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take some time. All that and more coming up in the

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next 90 minutes of Golden Globe award- winning TV. Actually that's a

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lie. The first line of the programme! We've never won a thing

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in our life. But gracing us with their presence: Best dressed

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actress, Shadow Energy Secretary Caroline Flint and and best dressed

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actor, Justice Minister Shailish Vara. Welcome to you both. Now,

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first today let's talk about something we've never ever talked

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about before. Europe. Because this morning the Chancellor, George

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Osborne, has been warning that a failure to reform the European Union

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and renegotiate the terms of membership would condemn Europeans

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to "economic crisis and continuing decline". In a speech to a

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conference in London, Mr Osborne stressed that the European Union

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must be more competitive to keep up with other global economic powers

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like China and India. We all knew there was a

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competitiveness problem in Europe before the crisis, but the crisis

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has dramatically accelerated shifts in the tectonic economic plates that

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sea power moving eastwards and southwards on our planet. Over the

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last six years, the European economy has stalled. In the same period, the

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Indian economy has grown by more than a third, and the Chinese

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economy by 70%. Over the next 15 years, Europe's share of global

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output is forecast to halve. Make no mistake. Our continent is falling

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behind. That is George Osborne. Shailesh Vara, can your party ever

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stop talking about Europe? You always said you didn't want to bang

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on about Europe, but you seem to be doing it. It is an important issue,

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and the public have an issue in it. But there are other issues as well.

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What George Osborne is saying today is right, that we have got to ensure

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that the present European Union reforms, because if it doesn't, it

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will decline. We are all in it to make sure that there is prosperity

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for all of us. Do you think the threat of civil war in your party

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over Europe helps David Cameron's negotiating position with his EU

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partners? The different views in my party have always been there. And it

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hasn't helped, has it in terms of the Conservative Party's prospect?

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Disunity hasn't helped. Many other European leaders are beginning to

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reflect what their own country's population are beginning to feel and

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say to them, and they all feel the need for reform and change. So I

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think the people that David Cameron will deal with, the other European

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leaders, other people who matter, and they are beginning to get a

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sense that we form is necessary. If the Conservatives win the next

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election, in about 24 months, there will be a referendum, and people

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will be able to decide, in or out. But that isn't proving to be enough

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for 95 of your Conservative colleagues. That whole speech was

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designed to placate those who would like to see some moving terms of our

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relationship with Europe sooner rather than later. But does their

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position helped the promised or not? The negotiations on with the

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other European leaders. So he should ignore those people in the party who

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call for things like a veto of EU law unilaterally when Britain, when

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it is not in Britain's interests? We have a -- the Prime Minister is

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clear that if we have a unilateral veto, then other countries could do

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that and the whole thing starts to fall apart. We want to reform, put

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together a package and stated in the country. Reform is important, isn't

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it Caroline Flint? I think reform of the European Union is important, and

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some things speak to what George Osborne is saying. We do need to

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look at growth and competition, budget control. We had our view

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before that there should be a gross commissioner, -- a growth

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commissioner. I think we need to be clear about what the Chancellor is

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suggesting, because we are not there to compete with China and India on a

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low-wage economy. Unless we are going to go for a real race to the

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bottom, we won't beat them on labour costs, so we have to think

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differently. So you are happy to keep the regulations like the

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working Time directive all rights for workers put upon us by the EU,

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because that would prevent a low-wage economy? I think some of

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the things like paid holiday is something that we want to keep as a

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country and across the whole of Europe, because we don't want to be

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undercut by some of the new entrants with a lower standard of

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employment. But how do we deal with China and elsewhere, making sure

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that we have a secure, qualified workforce that is exporting to

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Europe but also to the rest of the world, including what they call the

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BRIC countries. Europe Cancer 7% of the world's population and 50% of

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welfare spending. Is that right? Part of what we should do is to

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challenge... Do you reject those figures? We need to look at health

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systems, housing, everything. The aim for Europe should be to

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encourage better standards elsewhere in the world as well. We had that

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disastrous factory closing the lack from another part of the world where

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we source close through prior mark, people wondered how that could

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happen. -- through Primark. We should always be trying to ensure

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that these regulations keep everyone safe. Regulations are a burden for

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business. Safety regulations like Caroline was talking about? We need

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to make sure there are basic safety measures, but the unnecessary

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bureaucracy that stems from Europe is stifling. Give me examples of

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unnecessary bureaucracy. Paperwork. In the farming industry, a farmer is

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there to look after his crops or his animals. Instead, he has to fill in

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papers each of his livestock. And on another matter, it is important that

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you don't knock Britain. We now have more people in employment than ever

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before. We are actually attracting overseas investment. The largest

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private-sector employer in this country happens to be the Tata

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group. Keeping a watch on the amount of paperwork is worthwhile, but

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let's talk about farmers and what they produce. Farmers in this

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country and food manufacturers are protected by making sure that the

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products that they have cannot be copied and sold as the original

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elsewhere in the European Union, that is protected the market for

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many of our goods. It is not about always looking at regulation. You

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have to be clear about what you are talking about. You say you want to

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attract more investment, but the Mayor of London says that the threat

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of the exit from the U is a sordid Damocles held over businesses. What

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do you say to that? A decision has not yet been taken. Businesses have

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been talking about this one way or another, but at the moment,

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investment is still coming into this country. Employment is at a high

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level. You will recall that on this very programme, I talked about the

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protected status of Stilton cheese. I have been banging on about

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regulations, and those... You would like a veto on the regulations? Do

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you agree with those people? No. What I want is for the Prime

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Minister to negotiate with his counterparts across the European

:10:08.:10:10.

Union to create a package to put to the public who can have final say.

:10:11.:10:15.

Briefly, Caroline, why don't you just give the British people the

:10:16.:10:20.

chance to have a say? There are really important things we need to

:10:21.:10:23.

discuss about the European Union, and the problem with the referendum,

:10:24.:10:27.

is they are putting it out there and we don't know the basis on which it

:10:28.:10:31.

will be held. Hang on a second. You don't know what the European Union

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will look like after your negotiation and therefore what the

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question is. Cameron is trying to have it both ways. He says he wants

:10:40.:10:44.

to stay and reform, but he has to throw a bone to those people who

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will never say and never be satisfied they are out. You just

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won't want a referendum. You are happy with what we have got. No. Are

:10:54.:11:02.

you finished? It's your turn! The latest odds on who President

:11:03.:11:06.

Hollande will take to the White House. He is odds-on that he will go

:11:07.:11:15.

alone. Valerie Trierweiler, two to one. Julie Gayet, 20 to one. Sig Lim

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Royale, the mother of his four children, 66 to one. And Carla Bruni

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is 100 to one. She of course is Mrs Nicolas Sarkozy.

:11:34.:11:38.

Although Labour has made strong running of late, the latest polls

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have shown that it hasn't had quite the impact on voters that they

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hoped. Their poll lead has shrunk to just 3%, attributed to the

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recovering economy. We don't know if that is a rogue result or not. So it

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looks like Ed Miliband will have to keep trying to turn up the pressure

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on the Tories. Over to you, Jo. I'm not going to the White House, I can

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tell you that. You are 600 to one! Another day, another Labour

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campaign. First it was cost of living, yesterday it was saving the

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middle classes. And today it's back to banker-bashing. Labour is

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demanding that the Chancellor stops RBS from paying out bumper bonuses.

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The maximum bonus, set by the EU, is one year's pay. But this can be

:12:27.:12:29.

doubled if shareholders agree. Labour has tabled a Commons motion

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calling on the Government, the majority shareholder, to reject any

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such request. The Treasury seems to have a very different view. They're

:12:38.:12:40.

actually against the EU limit on bonuses itself and are challenging

:12:41.:12:45.

it in the courts. It's a political dilemma - whilst no-one wants to be

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seen as the banks' best mate, it's taxpayers who'll win if RBS keep

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talented staff and make loads of money.

:12:53.:12:58.

Thank you for that. And we're joined now by the Editor of City AM,

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Alistair Heath. Now, David Cameron said last year that we're all

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Thatcherites now. Also known as the French Ambassador's best friend here

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in London. What is wrong with the Government exercising their

:13:16.:13:21.

shareholders' writes? There is nothing wrong with it. But if they

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think that the bonuses should be set at 200% limit, but is also right. So

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I don't believe that it should be a political issue. It should be a

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commercial issue in terms of making sure that RBS recovers as quickly as

:13:40.:13:43.

possible and is worth more to the taxpayer when it is eventually

:13:44.:13:47.

privatised. So if the Government is the major shareholder, it should set

:13:48.:13:53.

or OK all have a veto over the bonus? There are two issues here.

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There is the populist issue of saying no, or the realistic option

:14:02.:14:05.

in recognising that each taxpayer in our country has contributed ?5,000

:14:06.:14:10.

to bailing out RBS, and the ultimate aim has to be to make sure that when

:14:11.:14:17.

we resell RBS, we get maximum value. We could say no to all of this, and

:14:18.:14:23.

it is the taxpayer who suffers. You cut your nose to spite your face.

:14:24.:14:29.

Two simple points we wanted to make. What is the simple answer to my

:14:30.:14:35.

simple question? I am not a Treasury minister. But I'm very happy with

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what I'm doing at the moment! But clearly it is a dilemma will stop

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you have not had the talking point or the briefing notes on what the

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government policy is. You know that the Chancellor is

:14:53.:14:56.

challenging the existing position. That is on the principle, that it

:14:57.:15:00.

would cover all banks, I'm talking about the European Union saying that

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you can't pay anyone more than one year's salary as a bonus. This is

:15:04.:15:09.

the issue in principle of whether the Government should veto or

:15:10.:15:23.

approve the bonuses at RBS. I am not the minister in charge. But we don't

:15:24.:15:30.

have a policy yet? As far as I am aware, I don't know. You have the

:15:31.:15:35.

simplistic option which is popular, or the realistic option. Or no

:15:36.:15:41.

option at all until you have that made up your mind. You have only

:15:42.:15:44.

owned the bank for about eight years! The request has only just

:15:45.:15:50.

come through. Have we had any requests for bonuses yet? What I

:15:51.:16:02.

heard today is apparently there hasn't been a formal request. But

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because there is quite a lot of speculation amongst people in the

:16:11.:16:14.

finance community and the media, this request is likely to come

:16:15.:16:18.

forward. It is fair for us to say before we end up with a done deal,

:16:19.:16:21.

through parliament we express a point of view. Even though RBS has

:16:22.:16:28.

not requested any bonuses? Nobody can change it when a deal is done.

:16:29.:16:33.

What we can have an open debate where we can all have our say. As

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you said, the rules said that banks come up to 100% of someone's salary

:16:40.:16:46.

and 100% of it again for bonuses. But if they want to double it they

:16:47.:16:52.

have to go to their shareholders. We are the biggest shareholders, the

:16:53.:16:58.

taxpayers have nailed out this bank. There is still problems in terms of

:16:59.:17:03.

their lending to business, and on all those counts and there is more

:17:04.:17:07.

and we do not believe it is right they should get a 200% increase. But

:17:08.:17:13.

you would allow them a bonus of up to 100% of their salary? Under the

:17:14.:17:19.

European new rules -- rules which we have supported, which says they can

:17:20.:17:26.

have a bonus of up to 100% but beyond that they have to go to the

:17:27.:17:32.

shareholders. So you support that? Then we have to go to the EU

:17:33.:17:38.

legislation. We are a shareholder in this organisation. We get the

:17:39.:17:44.

principle. George Osborne is trying to get rid of that. Every other bank

:17:45.:17:50.

would go for 200%. But does that say something about the sector. Do you

:17:51.:17:54.

want to ban bonuses in banks on do you want to restrict them to 50%.

:17:55.:18:02.

The problem at the moment is, if you are allocating resources and hiring

:18:03.:18:08.

people, what the Labour policy will be on this? I understand there was

:18:09.:18:11.

an increase on the numbers of people coming to work in the financial

:18:12.:18:16.

sector and trading in the last year by a considerable sum. It does not

:18:17.:18:21.

look like there is a stem on the flow of people wanting to work in

:18:22.:18:25.

this sector. We have to make sure the crisis that came about through

:18:26.:18:28.

poor financial management in this sector and a bonus culture that

:18:29.:18:34.

encouraged wrongdoing, we don't find ourselves in the same position.

:18:35.:18:40.

Excuse me, it is not a monologue. What would happen if RBS is limited

:18:41.:18:50.

to 100% and H -- HSBC pays 300%. They will have to get on with their

:18:51.:18:55.

jobs. You say that, but all the good people will move to HSBC. This is

:18:56.:19:02.

always the arguments, whether it is the banking sector or energy, if you

:19:03.:19:07.

make any changes to upset the status quo it will all go under and fail. I

:19:08.:19:12.

don't think that is true. It has been used against politicians

:19:13.:19:16.

against making changes when we should have made changes. It stands

:19:17.:19:22.

to reason any market economy, until Ed Miliband gets into power, if a

:19:23.:19:28.

bank is paying a bonus three times bigger than another bank, the people

:19:29.:19:33.

will leave, will they not? This sector is not sure in terms of

:19:34.:19:39.

people. He is the city journalist. Base pay is going up and bonuses are

:19:40.:19:44.

falling. A greater proportion of pay is paid out in cash, rather than in

:19:45.:19:53.

this bonuses. I would rather see transparency on the base pay. Short

:19:54.:19:58.

term compensation, as a result of capping bonuses, you get shorter

:19:59.:20:02.

term pay rather than longer term pay that can be clawed back. We don't go

:20:03.:20:07.

to nurses or doctors and say, you will get 100% bonus. If RBS got

:20:08.:20:12.

round this, and the way around it is, the European Union sets this

:20:13.:20:19.

rule the bonus can only be 100% of your salary, capped at that and for

:20:20.:20:25.

most people it would be a lot of money. What is to stop the banks

:20:26.:20:33.

saying, you are on 1 million, have 2 million. If RBS came and started to

:20:34.:20:38.

do that, would you intervene to stop salary is going up? What we need to

:20:39.:20:51.

be mindful of its we have this cap, salaries will be there to get around

:20:52.:20:54.

the bonuses. You will get allowances. They will be thrown in.

:20:55.:21:02.

Would you intervene? I want to see a commercial... Just say it. I am an

:21:03.:21:13.

serene yet. I am sorry you don't like the answer. I would like the

:21:14.:21:19.

maximum benefit for the taxpayer. That is a fair enough point. Let me

:21:20.:21:29.

ask you this, since I cannot get the reply I want here, Labour's policy

:21:30.:21:35.

as I understand it, Ed Miliband is going to announce you will cap any

:21:36.:21:40.

bank from holding more than 25% of the domestic banking market, is that

:21:41.:21:47.

right? I will not get into what Ed Miliband is going to talk about in

:21:48.:21:52.

his speech and announce on Friday. What I will say, Ed Miliband will be

:21:53.:22:00.

talking on how do we earn a higher standard of living and make the

:22:01.:22:03.

right reforms, it is not just about ranking and other sectors, to make

:22:04.:22:07.

sure we can have a competitive economy, transparent and fair. You

:22:08.:22:13.

will have to wait 72 hours. I am only asking because you are prepared

:22:14.:22:18.

to tell RBS what it should do before they announce any bonuses at all,

:22:19.:22:22.

but you will not tell us what the 25% is. We need more competition in

:22:23.:22:30.

retail banking. We need to make it easier for new entrants into the

:22:31.:22:34.

market and make it easier for people to switch bank accounts. Capping of

:22:35.:22:40.

25% robs any bank of the incentive to grow. A bank will want to fight

:22:41.:22:47.

for more customers. You can only get a new customer if a customer leaves

:22:48.:22:52.

or dies. The banking service will collapse and get rid of

:22:53.:22:55.

underperforming customers. If you don't earn much money, they will not

:22:56.:23:00.

want you. It is the wrong way to do it. We are going to have to leave it

:23:01.:23:07.

there and wait till Friday. I can hardly wait. I have sleepless nights

:23:08.:23:12.

ahead of me. Enjoy your lunch at the French Embassy.

:23:13.:23:19.

Now, David Cameron said last year that we're all Thatcherites now. And

:23:20.:23:24.

it turns out he really wasn't kidding. Because the BBC has

:23:25.:23:27.

discovered that the socialist firebrand, working-class hero and

:23:28.:23:29.

one-time scourge of the establishment, I speak of none other

:23:30.:23:32.

than Arthur Scargill, former leader of the National Union of

:23:33.:23:36.

Mineworkers, was something of a Thatcherite himself. That cannot be,

:23:37.:23:45.

you say to me. The BBC's Inside Out programme has found legal documents

:23:46.:23:49.

showing he was happy to use one of Thatcher's flagship policies, the

:23:50.:23:52.

right to buy scheme, to try to purchase his council flat in

:23:53.:23:55.

London's Barbican. The application was turned down because the flat

:23:56.:23:58.

wasn't his primary residence. He says he was planning to buy it and

:23:59.:24:05.

hand it over the NUM. His former union, which paid his rent until

:24:06.:24:12.

2011, isn't exactly convinced. Well Arthur, worry not, because we've got

:24:13.:24:16.

one valuable asset that you can get your hands on without charges of

:24:17.:24:23.

hypocrisy to the cause. Yes it's the Daily Politics mug. There's no right

:24:24.:24:29.

to buy one, but you can win one in our Guess the Year competition. Well

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done. We'll remind you how to enter in a minute, but let's see if you

:24:39.:24:44.

can remember when this happened. I Franklin Roosevelt do solemnly

:24:45.:24:55.

swear... The only thing we have two fear is fear itself.

:24:56.:25:15.

There would have been no Shakespeare, no Newton. They must be

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prepared to make their contribution in disarmament.

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To be in with a chance of winning a Daily Politics mug, send your answer

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to our special quiz e-mail address. And you can see the full terms and

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conditions for Guess The Year on our website.

:26:08.:26:15.

It's coming up to midday here, just take a look at Big Ben. That can

:26:16.:26:19.

mean only one thing - yes, Prime Minister's Questions is on its way.

:26:20.:26:24.

And that's not all, Nick Robinson is here.

:26:25.:26:31.

I don't think we have to wait until Friday to hear what Ed Miliband is

:26:32.:26:36.

going to say about the banks. It is hard to find anybody who is not in

:26:37.:26:40.

favour of more competition in the banking sector. Ed Miliband will

:26:41.:26:50.

talk about a sex -- cap and that specific figure of a 25% cap on

:26:51.:26:59.

market share is not right. But the idea of a cap, the idea that banks

:27:00.:27:04.

cannot get too big and if they do they have do sell off their

:27:05.:27:08.

branches, sell them off not to the other competitors, but these new

:27:09.:27:14.

competitor banks, Challenger banks, I am sorry. That is at the heart of

:27:15.:27:18.

this new proposal by Ed Miliband. The government is likely to say

:27:19.:27:24.

there has a lot been done to promote competition already, and there is a

:27:25.:27:30.

legal obligation to bring about banking competition. It has not

:27:31.:27:34.

happened yet. So you either say, it will happen, or as Ed Miliband will

:27:35.:27:40.

say on Friday, no, more needs to be changed to force that to happen. And

:27:41.:27:44.

this idea of a capital share is borrowed from the United States. 25%

:27:45.:27:57.

of what? It won't be 25%. What then? That is what we will have to wait

:27:58.:28:00.

until Friday for. Are you talking about the number of ranchers, we

:28:01.:28:08.

will have to wait for that detail. I am not going to pre-empt his speech

:28:09.:28:15.

on Friday. What we are addressing is there needs to be more competition.

:28:16.:28:19.

Everybody agrees with that. There you go, that is the lead up to

:28:20.:28:25.

Friday. He has worked it out and you will have it on Friday. After three

:28:26.:28:32.

or four years now, there is still a lot more that needs to be done in

:28:33.:28:37.

this sector. As his shadow Energy Secretary, I know it is another

:28:38.:28:41.

sector where you can see reform is necessary and we need to do more. It

:28:42.:28:50.

is a debate which means the means rather than the ending in politics.

:28:51.:28:54.

All of the party said there is too much dominance of the big five. It

:28:55.:28:59.

is smaller in Scotland. If you live in Scotland, it is probably a big

:29:00.:29:06.

three, or a 2.5. Everyone agrees, the question is the mechanism. The

:29:07.:29:11.

European Commission forced the banks to off-load certain branches. That

:29:12.:29:22.

is why we got the TSB. People find it hard to sell the branches. So the

:29:23.:29:26.

theory is often shared by politicians and regulating, but

:29:27.:29:32.

doing it. What is going to come up in PMQs? I think banking. I think

:29:33.:29:41.

about bonuses. David Cameron and George Osborne grand standard on

:29:42.:29:46.

bonuses when they were in opposition and now the Labour Party is

:29:47.:29:53.

grandstanding on bonuses. It is a large, open goal. Would you like to

:29:54.:29:59.

criticise bankers? Yes. But when we are ministers, we do things

:30:00.:30:05.

differently than what we said we would do. All three of the big

:30:06.:30:10.

parties do things differently. I am glad you have noticed that. On that

:30:11.:30:16.

very point. Caroline has forgotten who got us into the banking mess in

:30:17.:30:24.

the first place. The bankers worldwide got us into this.

:30:25.:30:28.

Politicians did not do enough at the bankers were allowed to get on with

:30:29.:30:32.

things and cause those problems. Give it a rest. We are all on track.

:30:33.:30:40.

Will the Prime Minister face any attacks from his own side 's? There

:30:41.:30:48.

is the question on Europe. Yesterday he had a meeting on European policy.

:30:49.:30:53.

Just as they were going to ask him questions about Europe, potentially

:30:54.:30:57.

he said, this is Craig Oliver who will make a presentation on why we

:30:58.:31:04.

should stay united until the next election and funnily enough, the

:31:05.:31:08.

question of Europe never came up will stop but 100 Tory MPs signed a

:31:09.:31:20.

motion saying we should renegotiate with Europe.

:31:21.:31:23.

Let's go over to the House of Commons.

:31:24.:31:34.

Launched last week, action on a sugar aimed to reduce the sugar

:31:35.:31:39.

content of food and drinks by up to 20%, because of the epidemic in

:31:40.:31:47.

obesity and type two diabetes. Voluntary arrangements with

:31:48.:31:50.

manufacturers have not work. Will the Prime Minister agreed to meet

:31:51.:31:53.

with a delegation of health experts to discuss this, and can we enlist

:31:54.:31:56.

his support in the war on sugar by asking him to give up sugar and

:31:57.:32:04.

sugary drinks for one day this weekques-mac I'm sure that last

:32:05.:32:06.

proposal will have the strong support of Mrs Cameron, so I will

:32:07.:32:12.

take that up if I possibly can. I commend the honourable gentleman for

:32:13.:32:15.

raising this issue and for speaking out on the issues of diabetes and

:32:16.:32:22.

obesity with such consistency, because they are important issues.

:32:23.:32:29.

We are rolling out the NHS programme to identify although is at risk of

:32:30.:32:34.

diabetes. Childhood obesity rates are falling, but there is more to be

:32:35.:32:39.

done. I am happy to facilitate discussions between him and I am

:32:40.:32:42.

right honourable friend the Health Secretary. We take this seriously,

:32:43.:32:49.

and there is more to be done. Last week, I had the honour of

:32:50.:32:53.

opening the new network rail regional operating centre at three

:32:54.:32:56.

bridges in my constituency. Can my right honourable friend say

:32:57.:33:06.

what investment this gov-mac is putting into the existing rail

:33:07.:33:11.

network to help commuters as travellers as part of the long-term

:33:12.:33:21.

economic planques-mac investing in infrastructure is a key part of our

:33:22.:33:26.

long-term plan. We need to see major investment in the south-east, with

:33:27.:33:32.

Thames Link, crossrail and east-west rail all delivering services, and

:33:33.:33:37.

between 2015 and 2020, we are planning to invest over 66 alien in

:33:38.:33:42.

roads, rail and local transport, and it is important to make the point

:33:43.:33:46.

that that is three times as much as they proposed investment in HS2, so

:33:47.:33:55.

that will not take the majority of the money as suggested. RBS are

:33:56.:34:09.

expected to ask the Government to approve bonuses of multi-million

:34:10.:34:19.

pound salaries. We will continue with our plans for RBS that have

:34:20.:34:24.

seen bonuses come down by 85%, that have seen the bonus pool at one

:34:25.:34:27.

third of the level that it was under Labour, and I can confirm today that

:34:28.:34:34.

just as we have had limits on cash bonuses of ?2000 at RBS this year

:34:35.:34:37.

and last year, we will do the same next year as well. I think we can

:34:38.:34:44.

all agree with the general sentiment he expresses about bonuses, but

:34:45.:34:47.

today I am asking a specific question. RBS are talking to parts

:34:48.:34:52.

of the Government about the proposal to pay over 100% bonuses. He is the

:34:53.:34:57.

Prime Minister. The taxpayer will foot the bill. Will he put a stop to

:34:58.:35:02.

it right now by telling RBS to drop this idea? I will tell you exactly

:35:03.:35:09.

what we are saying, and it is this. If there are any proposals to

:35:10.:35:13.

increase the overall pay that is pay and bonus bill at RBS at the

:35:14.:35:17.

investment bank, any proposals for that, we will veto it. What a pity

:35:18.:35:21.

the past government never took such an approach.

:35:22.:35:28.

However long it takes, the questions will be heard, and the answers will

:35:29.:35:47.

be heard. Mr Ed Miliband. I am not asking about increases in pay and

:35:48.:35:50.

bonuses. I am asking a simple question. A simple question about

:35:51.:35:55.

the proposal expected to come forward from RBS which is to pay

:35:56.:36:03.

more than 100% bonuses on pay. When RBS is making a loss, when they

:36:04.:36:08.

themselves say they have been failing small businesses and these

:36:09.:36:11.

kind of bonuses leads to risky one-way bets, this shouldn't be

:36:12.:36:16.

allowed to happen. When ordinary families are facing a cost of living

:36:17.:36:20.

crisis, surely he can say that for people earning ?1 million, a bonus

:36:21.:36:25.

of ?1 million should be quite enough! If he is not asking me about

:36:26.:36:30.

the overall pay and bonuses, why on earth isn't he? What I have said

:36:31.:36:38.

very clearly is that the remuneration, the total pay bill at

:36:39.:36:40.

that investment bank, must come down. But I have to say, to get a

:36:41.:36:47.

lecture from the right honourable gentleman when we had from them the

:36:48.:36:50.

biggest bust anywhere in the world with RBS, we had 125% mortgages at

:36:51.:36:57.

Northern rock. We had all the embarrassment about Fred Goodwin. He

:36:58.:37:03.

comes here every week to complain about a problem created by the

:37:04.:37:09.

Labour Party. Last week it was betting, this week it is banking. He

:37:10.:37:13.

rises up with all the moral authority of reverend flowers,

:37:14.:37:19.

whereas the apology? For the mess they made of RBS in the first

:37:20.:37:21.

place! In the last two years, my counsel

:37:22.:37:39.

has created millions of pounds worth of inward investment, halved youth

:37:40.:37:42.

unemployment and seen record numbers of new businesses starting up.

:37:43.:37:49.

Sutton is also the home of the world Master Hospital. Given that life

:37:50.:37:52.

sciences are an engine for innovation and growth, what support

:37:53.:37:56.

will the government gave to realise Sutton's plan of a life science

:37:57.:38:00.

cluster based around these world-renowned centres of

:38:01.:38:03.

excellence? I think my friend makes a good point

:38:04.:38:06.

about the strength of that Sutton house. Obviously we have the painted

:38:07.:38:11.

box to attract life science businesses to Britain. We also have

:38:12.:38:15.

the investment in apprenticeships, and that is important. And the

:38:16.:38:20.

office of the life sciences which brings business and health together

:38:21.:38:23.

to help bring life sciences jobs here, working with local enterprise

:38:24.:38:27.

partnerships. I think there is a great opportunity for more

:38:28.:38:34.

investment. The Mark Duggan inquest concluded last week with a verdict

:38:35.:38:45.

of unlawful killing. -- lawful killing. Does the Prime Minister

:38:46.:38:53.

accept it is now urgent that we we form the Independent Police

:38:54.:38:57.

Complaints Commission? I commend what he said about the importance of

:38:58.:39:01.

people respecting the outcome of the inquest. We had proper legal

:39:02.:39:05.

processes, and we should respect their outcomes. He also knows there

:39:06.:39:11.

is still an ongoing independent police investigation into that case,

:39:12.:39:15.

and we should let it do its work. I am always repaired to look at

:39:16.:39:19.

reforms of organisations like this. There was a big reform some time ago

:39:20.:39:26.

to make the IPCC more independent. I am happy to look at arguments. In

:39:27.:39:31.

the issue of PC Wallace, this was deeply shocking to see an e-mail

:39:32.:39:38.

that purported to be someone who had witnessed an event, and you are told

:39:39.:39:41.

it is a member of the public, and then it turns out it is a serving

:39:42.:39:45.

police officer, that is deeply troubling. The vast majority of the

:39:46.:39:51.

British police service do a magnificent job and put their lives

:39:52.:39:54.

on the line for us they after day. I am happy to look at proposals for

:39:55.:39:57.

how we can strengthen these arrangements. Will the Prime

:39:58.:40:03.

Minister join me in congratulating the street crime commission in my

:40:04.:40:14.

constituency, and can he see how with D2N2 money, they are creating a

:40:15.:40:19.

expansion programme which will increase jobs by 20%, and their

:40:20.:40:31.

expert s across the world show how it can be done. We have seen the

:40:32.:40:35.

regional growth fund produce some real economic success stories, and

:40:36.:40:39.

that is being combined with our long-term economic plan to encourage

:40:40.:40:44.

businesses to take on employees, but in place the infrastructure, and as

:40:45.:40:48.

he says quite importantly, to back exports in terms of Britain's

:40:49.:40:51.

performance and get out there and sell to the world. Given that we

:40:52.:40:57.

have recently heard reports that half a dozen terrorist suspects

:40:58.:40:59.

could soon be released onto our streets, can the Prime Minister give

:41:00.:41:05.

an assurance of public safety that it will not be compromised or put at

:41:06.:41:09.

risk once the Government's latest experiment in terrorism controls

:41:10.:41:13.

expires? I can assure her and the house that

:41:14.:41:16.

we will always take every step necessary to keep the British public

:41:17.:41:20.

safe. I think that the measures are working well. It is a myth to

:41:21.:41:25.

pretend that control orders would be kept in place for ever. Many people

:41:26.:41:30.

were taken off control orders during the existence of that set of

:41:31.:41:34.

measures. All of the time, I listened very carefully to the head

:41:35.:41:37.

of the Metropolitan police service and the heads of the Security

:41:38.:41:40.

service who are involved in drawing up these measures, and who advises

:41:41.:41:47.

on how to keep our country safe. In the first six months of last

:41:48.:41:49.

year, Shrewsbury benefited from the highest number of is nurse start-ups

:41:50.:41:56.

in our town's history. Now the unemployed claimant count is down to

:41:57.:42:01.

2.5% in Shrewsbury. Will the Prime Minister join me in praising our

:42:02.:42:04.

entrepreneurial spirit, and redouble Government efforts in the West

:42:05.:42:09.

Midlands to help more shrews brief Ernst export? My honourable friend

:42:10.:42:16.

is absolutely right. We are seeing an enterprise revolution in our

:42:17.:42:20.

country again. 400,000 more businesses in existence today

:42:21.:42:24.

compared with 2010. Add the point he makes about small businesses and

:42:25.:42:31.

exports is important. If we can turn it the number of businesses

:42:32.:42:34.

exporting from one in five to one in four, we would wipe out our trade

:42:35.:42:39.

efforts it. I encourage him to do everything he can, with other

:42:40.:42:43.

colleagues, to back Britain's entrepreneurs.

:42:44.:42:51.

Mr Speaker... There are areas all over the country with planning

:42:52.:42:58.

permission for houses where nothing is happening. Some of them being

:42:59.:43:07.

hoarded by developers. I am in favour of giving powers to say to

:43:08.:43:12.

developers that to hold land without developing it, use it or lose it.

:43:13.:43:16.

The Prime Minister said that was not. Does he still believe it? We

:43:17.:43:21.

have just had a demonstration of the grasp of maths that was involved in

:43:22.:43:25.

the Treasury. No wonder we had banks collapsing and all the rest of it. I

:43:26.:43:30.

would say that house-building is picking up. We are seeing a big

:43:31.:43:35.

increase in housing starts, a big increase in housing completion. Why

:43:36.:43:41.

I think is that his policy, as he kindly put it, is nuts, is that to

:43:42.:43:49.

confiscate land from developers, they won't go ahead with the

:43:50.:43:53.

building in the first place. This will put a freeze on building,

:43:54.:43:57.

rather than getting on with it. The Prime Minister is incredibly

:43:58.:44:03.

complacent. House completions are at their lowest level since 1924, and

:44:04.:44:06.

I'm interested in what he says about the policy, because his own housing

:44:07.:44:12.

minister says that the policy might make a contribution, and the Mayor

:44:13.:44:17.

of London says, we should be able to have a use it or lose it clause.

:44:18.:44:22.

Developers should be under no illusions that they can just sit on

:44:23.:44:25.

their land and wait for prices to go up. So is the policy nuts, or is it

:44:26.:44:30.

the right thing to do? What we need to keep going with is the policies

:44:31.:44:35.

of this Government that are seeing house-building increase. Nearly

:44:36.:44:41.

400,000 new homes delivered since 2010, housing starts in the last

:44:42.:44:45.

quarter at their highest level for five years, 89% higher than the

:44:46.:44:52.

trough in 2009 when he was sitting in the cabinet, a 16% increase in

:44:53.:44:55.

housing starts in the last 12 months. But here is the question he

:44:56.:44:59.

needs to answer. His shadow ministers go around opposing our

:45:00.:45:04.

planning reforms even though they are important to get Britain

:45:05.:45:08.

building, and time and again they are criticising proposals like help

:45:09.:45:12.

to buy that are helping our fellow countrymen and women realise the

:45:13.:45:15.

dream of home ownership. And here is one for him. If he cares about

:45:16.:45:19.

house-building at home ownership, why not make those Labour council

:45:20.:45:22.

get on with selling council houses to hard-working people? In Labour

:45:23.:45:36.

councils they are building more houses ban in Tory councils.

:45:37.:45:40.

I am still no clear at the end of this exchange about what he thinks

:45:41.:45:44.

about the use it or lose it policy. He does not know what he thinks.

:45:45.:45:50.

Here is the reality, he is not doing enough to close the gap between

:45:51.:45:56.

supply and demand. The truth is, the number of social housing starts is

:45:57.:46:04.

down, rents are rising. Does he accept Britain is building 100,000

:46:05.:46:10.

fewer homes than we need to meet the man is? Of course we need to build

:46:11.:46:14.

new homes and that is why we have reformed the planning system. That

:46:15.:46:21.

is why we have Help to Buy, which they oppose. What we are seeing, he

:46:22.:46:25.

is now having to jump around all over the place. It started off with

:46:26.:46:30.

the deficit reduction is not going to work. He cannot make that

:46:31.:46:35.

argument. Then it was, we needed to land be, but he cannot make that

:46:36.:46:40.

argument. Then it was the cost of living but yesterday we saw

:46:41.:46:44.

inflation fall by 2%. What we see is a government with a long, economic

:46:45.:46:49.

plan and an opposition that does not have a clue. Order, order. Can I

:46:50.:47:02.

welcome the government commitment to make sure Mike constituency benefits

:47:03.:47:08.

from shale gas. But can the government do more and the

:47:09.:47:18.

scientific community to do more to reassure the worries people have

:47:19.:47:21.

about the technology and environmental impact? He is right to

:47:22.:47:26.

raise this and make the remarks he does. Shale gas has potential for

:47:27.:47:34.

the country. If we recovered 7% of the shares it would provide us with

:47:35.:47:37.

gas in this country for 30 years. But we need to do a better job in

:47:38.:47:42.

explaining and working with communities about the benefits and

:47:43.:47:48.

talking frankly about the process. There are a huge amount of myths put

:47:49.:47:52.

around to frighten people. We can see in the United States it can be

:47:53.:47:56.

extract could safely and cleanly, affecting affect live and low-cost

:47:57.:48:01.

green energy for homes and businesses and make our country more

:48:02.:48:06.

competitive. As we sit here, there are six British nationals, including

:48:07.:48:17.

a former paratrooper languishing in prison in a prison because they were

:48:18.:48:22.

taken prisoner off a ship. Can the Prime Minister discussed this issue

:48:23.:48:28.

to see if we can get these former paratroopers and released from

:48:29.:48:31.

prison? I know how important this issue is and I raised it personally

:48:32.:48:36.

with the Indian government ministers when I was in India. I have

:48:37.:48:40.

discussed it with the Foreign Secretary and I will go on to make

:48:41.:48:45.

sure we can do and we can. We will arrange a meeting. Investing in

:48:46.:48:58.

research and innovation is essential for our economic future. Does the

:48:59.:49:03.

Prime Minister agreed that the Open University's research project to

:49:04.:49:08.

improve is one example on how Milton Keynes is leading the way in

:49:09.:49:12.

securing long-term economic plan? I visited the opening -- Open

:49:13.:49:19.

University at Milton Keynes. It is leading a very important export

:49:20.:49:24.

drive in terms of our universities. I congratulate Milton Keynes for the

:49:25.:49:31.

representation. There are many opportunities for Milton Keynes, not

:49:32.:49:34.

least provided by HS2 as well and I look forward to discussing it with

:49:35.:49:39.

him in the future. Constituencies tell me they cannot afford food,

:49:40.:49:46.

cannot keep warm or put petrol in the car to go to work. Will the

:49:47.:49:51.

Prime Minister finally accept the cost of living is stretching

:49:52.:49:57.

families to breaking point? Will he accept we are still recovering from

:49:58.:50:02.

the great recession that took ?3000 out of a typical income. But we are

:50:03.:50:09.

seeing more people in work, including in Wales, real wages

:50:10.:50:12.

starting to rise. Yes it is difficult, yes it is hard work, but

:50:13.:50:17.

the economy is growing and we want the recovery for everyone in the

:50:18.:50:22.

country. The number of people in Herefordshire in receipt of

:50:23.:50:27.

job-seeker's allowance fell 31% between November 2012 and November

:50:28.:50:31.

2013. Youth unemployment fell by 40%. Does the Prime Minister share

:50:32.:50:39.

my view the government's long-term plan is already giving employers the

:50:40.:50:44.

confidence to get hiring again? I am grateful for what he says. The key

:50:45.:50:49.

part of the long-term economic plan is to see a growing number of people

:50:50.:50:54.

in work in the country. We see 1.2 million more people in work in the

:50:55.:50:59.

West Midlands. Employment has risen by 60,000 since the election. There

:51:00.:51:03.

is still further to go, particularly in the West Midlands where we need

:51:04.:51:08.

to get young people back to work but the figures in his constituency are

:51:09.:51:14.

very encouraging. Instead of ordering a civil servant to

:51:15.:51:20.

investigate, why doesn't he just ask the Lords Geoffrey Howe and Leon

:51:21.:51:29.

Britton on whether they agreed with Margaret Thatcher and if it had

:51:30.:51:32.

something to do with the Westlands helicopter deal? I think he is

:51:33.:51:41.

looking at a conspiracy Theatre. It is important we get to the bottom of

:51:42.:51:45.

what happened. He will establish this urgently and establish the

:51:46.:51:51.

facts. I want this process to be fast and find out the truth and the

:51:52.:51:55.

findings will be made public. I will never forget my own visit to the

:51:56.:52:02.

Golden Temple, it is one of the most beautiful places on this planet and

:52:03.:52:06.

what happened 30 years ago led to a tragic loss of life. It is a source

:52:07.:52:13.

of deep pain to Sikhs everywhere. I completely understand the concerns

:52:14.:52:17.

of these papers raise. Let's wait for the outcome of the review. I

:52:18.:52:22.

don't want to prejudge the outcome, but so far it has not given any

:52:23.:52:26.

evidence to contradict the insistence by senior Indian army

:52:27.:52:33.

commanders responsible at the time, that the responsibility for this was

:52:34.:52:38.

planned and carried out by the Indian army. It is important to do

:52:39.:52:42.

that, but we do need an enquiry. On the 30th of January I will be

:52:43.:52:48.

holding a skills flair for 70 businesses and training

:52:49.:52:52.

organisations targeting young people with job opportunities. If Carlisle

:52:53.:52:58.

is to prosper it needs a skilled workforce. Will the Prime Minister

:52:59.:53:01.

give his support to this event and confirm he will remain committed to

:53:02.:53:05.

training and upscaling the young so they benefit personally and local

:53:06.:53:14.

and national businesses succeed? I commend my honourable friend for

:53:15.:53:18.

what he is carrying out in Carlisle. These jobs fairs and skills fairs

:53:19.:53:22.

and encouraging young people to think about apprenticeships and

:53:23.:53:27.

encourage people to train is some of the most important things we can do.

:53:28.:53:30.

We have 1.5 million apprenticeships started since the election --

:53:31.:53:37.

election. We must keep up this good work. The Prime Minister will be

:53:38.:53:46.

aware of the grave concern among British Sikhs about the reports in

:53:47.:53:54.

recent days of UK involvement to storm the Golden Temple. Those

:53:55.:54:01.

events resulted in the death of thousands of innocent Sikhs and this

:54:02.:54:09.

has left lasting grief and pain in the Seca community here in the UK

:54:10.:54:12.

and around the world. It is an open wound which will not heal until the

:54:13.:54:19.

truth is told. Can I ask him on the process he has set up, he will

:54:20.:54:23.

ensure there is full disclosure of all government papers and

:54:24.:54:28.

information from that time. And there is also a proper statement in

:54:29.:54:31.

this house where ministers can be questioned about this? Can I agree

:54:32.:54:38.

with him about the deep scars this event left and the strong feelings

:54:39.:54:43.

that exist to this day. Anyone who visits the Golden Temple and sees

:54:44.:54:47.

what an extraordinary place of peace and tranquillity it is, knows how

:54:48.:54:53.

powerful this point is. We are going to make sure this enquiry is held

:54:54.:54:56.

properly. Its findings will be made public. In the end, I don't think

:54:57.:55:04.

anyone should take away the responsibility for these events,

:55:05.:55:08.

with the people who are properly responsible for them. I am sure the

:55:09.:55:13.

enquiry will find that. In terms of holding a statement and revealing

:55:14.:55:18.

this information to the House, I think the statement might be the

:55:19.:55:23.

right approach. Come Prime Minister speak to his colleagues about the

:55:24.:55:30.

financial incentives for fracking be passed to parishes so those

:55:31.:55:35.

communities can choose how the money is spent rather than having to

:55:36.:55:39.

compete with district and county councils with other priorities? What

:55:40.:55:44.

we have set out is the overall level of financial support, so 100 hours

:55:45.:55:50.

and pounds when a well is Doug. And up to ?1 million because of the

:55:51.:55:57.

amount of revenue. And the business rates which could have a significant

:55:58.:56:02.

effect on local government finance. The point she makes is how do you

:56:03.:56:07.

divide batter between parishes, districts and counties and

:56:08.:56:11.

individual payments to households who might be inconvenienced. We

:56:12.:56:14.

should look at local options and make sure parishes and individual

:56:15.:56:19.

people will benefit. It is something colleagues will want to discuss so

:56:20.:56:23.

we can get this right and help this industry to take off. I am not sure

:56:24.:56:28.

if members are aware that anyone joining the police force will have

:56:29.:56:33.

to pay ?1000 for a certificate before they even fill in the

:56:34.:56:38.

application form. A ?1000 tax or make it harder for the police to

:56:39.:56:43.

look like the community it serves and I represent. It will put off

:56:44.:56:48.

young people from poorer backgrounds and ethnic minorities from joining

:56:49.:56:51.

the police. We know the Prime Minister at Myers characters like

:56:52.:57:02.

Harry Flashman. But Army commissions were abolished in 1871, why is it

:57:03.:57:06.

being introduced to the police in the 21st century? What we are trying

:57:07.:57:12.

to do through the College of policing is to even further

:57:13.:57:16.

professionalise this vital profession but I will make sure the

:57:17.:57:20.

Home Secretary contacts her about this issue. What is the point of

:57:21.:57:26.

anyone clinging onto a plan B when plan a is so obviously working? It

:57:27.:57:40.

is not just plan B we're not hearing about, they have stopped talking

:57:41.:57:45.

about the cost of living. They have stopped about how the deficit would

:57:46.:57:50.

not dumbed down. They told us growth would never come, and we would lose

:57:51.:57:54.

a million jobs rather than gain a million jobs. The biggest thing of

:57:55.:58:00.

all is the silence of the Shadow Chancellor. They have got this big

:58:01.:58:06.

debate today on banking, but he wasn't allowed on the radio, he

:58:07.:58:11.

won't be speaking in the House of Commons. They have a novel idea, you

:58:12.:58:16.

hide your Shadow Chancellor by leaving him on the front bench! The

:58:17.:58:23.

Prime Minister has previously shown considerable leadership in

:58:24.:58:27.

apologising to victims of state violence in Northern Ireland.

:58:28.:58:32.

Unfortunately those victims of paramilitary violence have not had

:58:33.:58:35.

access to such apologies. Does the Prime Minister agree the proposals

:58:36.:58:42.

of dealing with the past offer the best opportunity for victims and

:58:43.:58:45.

survivors to receive truth and justice? Will he commit, as Prime

:58:46.:58:50.

Minister, to backing those proposals, help why cooperating and

:58:51.:58:55.

funding those proposals? I think there is a lot of merit in the Dr

:58:56.:59:06.

Haass proposals. Peter Robinson, the first Minister of Northern Ireland,

:59:07.:59:09.

described them as providing the architecture for future agreement

:59:10.:59:13.

and discussion. I hope we can take his work, including the difficult

:59:14.:59:19.

work done on the past and take that forward with all sides trying to

:59:20.:59:23.

agree. I am not sure if the Prime Minister is a follower of benefit

:59:24.:59:28.

Street on Channel four. But there is a street like this in every

:59:29.:59:32.

constituency. Does he agree with me that as part of our long-term

:59:33.:59:37.

economic plans and make sure the benefits system is therefore people

:59:38.:59:42.

who need it. It is not a lifestyle choice and people don't get trapped

:59:43.:59:47.

in it? I have only managed to catch a small amount of this programme but

:59:48.:59:51.

it rings home the point that we need a welfare system that is tailored to

:59:52.:59:56.

make sure work always pays. But there is a second point that many

:59:57.:00:01.

people in our country have multiple disadvantages and problems where

:00:02.:00:04.

they need help to get out of poverty and benefit dependency. It is not

:00:05.:00:10.

just about tailoring a benefit system to make it pay, but also

:00:11.:00:16.

change the things that keep them out of work and earning a decent living.

:00:17.:00:21.

May I say to the Prime Minister as someone who strongly supports shale

:00:22.:00:27.

gas extraction by fracking, that however well-intentioned his current

:00:28.:00:32.

package will not assuage local communities who are on a cross-party

:00:33.:00:38.

basis in Lancashire treated his latest offers us derisory. Why can't

:00:39.:00:44.

he sit down with the cross-party Local Government Association and

:00:45.:00:49.

negotiate with them on the proposal, as in other countries, for 10% of

:00:50.:00:52.

revenues to be shared with local communities? I thought the proposals

:00:53.:00:57.

from some members would be 10% of profits. But I say 1% of revenues,

:00:58.:01:04.

which start running the moment the show comes out of the ground, maybe

:01:05.:01:10.

a better offer. I am happy to sit down with anybody to discuss this

:01:11.:01:13.

because shale is important to our country. Having been to see on

:01:14.:01:18.

Monday, the oil platforms that are already there on the

:01:19.:01:20.

Nottinghamshire, Lincolnshire border, it is worth making the point

:01:21.:01:26.

those went ahead without the community benefits we are

:01:27.:01:31.

promising. ?100,000 when the well is done, before any gas has reached the

:01:32.:01:39.

surface. 1% of revenues which could be seven or ?10 million for a

:01:40.:01:45.

fracking well. And business rates which for a set of wells could be ?2

:01:46.:01:49.

million for a local authority. Members should think about how much

:01:50.:01:54.

council tax is a small district authority raises and consider how

:01:55.:02:00.

much 1.7 up to ?2 million into that counsel, what a difference that

:02:01.:02:04.

could make. By all means, let's talk about the facts and figures, but we

:02:05.:02:09.

need to persuade people this can go ahead without the environmental

:02:10.:02:11.

damage and problems people are worried about. The leader of the

:02:12.:02:18.

opposition has said what Francois Hollande is doing in France, I want

:02:19.:02:30.

to do in Britain. Given recent events across the

:02:31.:02:34.

Channel, does my right honourable friend agree this is at odds with

:02:35.:02:43.

our long, economic plan? I didn't catch all of residence Hollands's

:02:44.:02:48.

press conference because I was in front of the liaison committee. But

:02:49.:02:54.

the French proposals now are to cut spending in order to put taxes, in

:02:55.:03:01.

order to make the economy more competitive. Now, perhaps the Shadow

:03:02.:03:07.

Chancellor in his new, silent form will want to consider some of these

:03:08.:03:10.

ideas and recognise this revolution of making business more competitive

:03:11.:03:14.

and trying to win in the global race, that is a proper plan for the

:03:15.:03:16.

economy. Order, order. So, the new look, subdued Prime

:03:17.:03:30.

Minister's Questions lasted all of one week, last week. He chose first

:03:31.:03:37.

of all to go on bankers bonuses, Ed Miliband. It is something we

:03:38.:03:45.

discussed in the run-up to PMQs. It will be a theme for Labour strongly

:03:46.:03:49.

this week. And then he moved on to the need to build more houses. And

:03:50.:03:54.

about the need to change the planning rules and be tougher on

:03:55.:03:58.

those builders who have land but are not building on it. Two issues very

:03:59.:04:04.

close to his heart and labour's current narrative. Whether he scored

:04:05.:04:09.

is something we will discuss in a moment. First of all, what did you

:04:10.:04:14.

think? Viewers verdict was that it was a win for David Cameron,

:04:15.:04:18.

although some of you felt that Ed Miliband did pick the right

:04:19.:04:24.

subjects. On Twitter, Alex Dismore said that the trouble with Ed

:04:25.:04:29.

Miliband's new approach is he is vulnerable to Cameron's school bully

:04:30.:04:37.

approach. Jim Broughton says that last week's Khan didn't last very

:04:38.:04:44.

long. Shameful the parliament was back to loud heckling. But Ian

:04:45.:04:52.

Jordan in Tamworth says a resounding victory for Ed Miliband today. His

:04:53.:04:55.

plans for banking and banking bonuses are pragmatic, populist

:04:56.:05:00.

policies that resonate with voters who are seeing no improvement in

:05:01.:05:03.

their day-to-day spending and economic position. And this tweet

:05:04.:05:07.

from Chris Bryant MP, who we all know. The staged shouting, accusing

:05:08.:05:15.

the Tories, is just puerile. And from Edward Buxton, Ed Miliband

:05:16.:05:18.

seemed thrown by the reaction of Tory backbenchers today, low was

:05:19.:05:23.

last week's trews carried on by Labour but not the Tories? Yes! I

:05:24.:05:32.

like that word, puerile. And he didn't get any attack from

:05:33.:05:36.

his own side, although he has been under pressure. On pay and bonuses,

:05:37.:05:44.

particularly in RBS where the state owns 80%. Ed Miliband wants to say,

:05:45.:05:54.

no bonus of more than 100% of salary, which is the new EU rule,

:05:55.:05:57.

although it doesn't come in until next year and therefore legally

:05:58.:06:02.

doesn't affect this year. But the Prime Minister is saying that the

:06:03.:06:06.

overall pay and bonuses pot at RBS cannot be increased. If it is, we

:06:07.:06:13.

will veto any increase, and no cash bonus for anybody could be bigger

:06:14.:06:21.

than ?2000. That is what he said, and at first it looked like an

:06:22.:06:23.

announcement, and it wrong-footed people. But I don't think he made

:06:24.:06:31.

any concession. There is no doubt he had a good Prime Minister's

:06:32.:06:35.

Questions, and although Ed Miliband was asking the right questions, he

:06:36.:06:40.

looked a bit glum and the Tories looked quite cheerful. But I don't

:06:41.:06:45.

think the Brymon is to announce anything new at all. The status quo

:06:46.:06:50.

is the Government says the bonus and papal can't get bigger, -- the pay

:06:51.:07:07.

pool can't get bigger, and the reason for that is that the bank is

:07:08.:07:12.

shrinking. So it is quite possible, and this is quite often true of

:07:13.:07:16.

Prime Minister's Questions, people ask who one, -- people ask who won,

:07:17.:07:25.

and the answer is both of them. As you say, the bonuses won't be the

:07:26.:07:30.

ones the bankers are about to get now, they are talking about bonuses

:07:31.:07:35.

in a year's time that would require shareholder approval at the next

:07:36.:07:40.

AGM. He is able to say and carry on saying that it is not applying, but

:07:41.:07:47.

again the Prime Minister is able to say there is less money being spent

:07:48.:07:52.

on total remuneration and a restriction on cash bonuses, because

:07:53.:07:56.

bonuses are being paid in shares. What is wrong with limiting bonuses

:07:57.:08:00.

to 2000 in cash, and anything else has to be shares? At the end of the

:08:01.:08:09.

day, it is still a fantastic package for anyone to receive, for the

:08:10.:08:13.

people lucky enough to be in a position to receive it. The 80%

:08:14.:08:20.

shareholder of the British people. Is it right or fair that a bank that

:08:21.:08:24.

still has to prove itself in terms of its performance should be going

:08:25.:08:27.

for the absolute they could possibly get under the new EU rules that are

:08:28.:08:30.

coming in, and we don't think that is right. When we sat here as we

:08:31.:08:37.

first heard what David Cameron said, I thought, what has he actually

:08:38.:08:44.

said? Is EV towing any bonuses, but were we got to the next answer, he

:08:45.:08:48.

was making it clearer that it was the total overall budget that would

:08:49.:08:53.

need to keep within them below. I think on that particular issue,

:08:54.:08:56.

there is still a lot that the Brymon is to has to answer. -- that the

:08:57.:09:06.

Prime Minister is to answer. But what is wrong getting bonuses that

:09:07.:09:08.

are shares in the bank, because you are aligning the interests of the

:09:09.:09:19.

taxpayer with the interest of the shareholders. What is wrong with

:09:20.:09:25.

both having the same interest? The problem is here that bonuses are

:09:26.:09:29.

meant to be, in banking or anywhere else, based on performance, but they

:09:30.:09:34.

also should be done in a way that doesn't lead to some of the extremes

:09:35.:09:39.

we have seen in the past. But even if it is a share option, the

:09:40.:09:42.

decision to give the bonus in the first place is about performance,

:09:43.:09:48.

and we do not believe that for RBS to seek the absolute they could give

:09:49.:09:52.

is the right way forward, for the reasons outlined. We want the share

:09:53.:09:59.

price to rise. Correct? They should be doing that anyway. That is their

:10:00.:10:05.

job. The mortgage rises, the more we will get our money back. We might

:10:06.:10:09.

even make a profit. So why not incentivise the bankers to get that

:10:10.:10:14.

share price rising? To be honest, Andrew, because these people are

:10:15.:10:17.

being paid good salaries to start with. We are not against bonuses,

:10:18.:10:22.

and we are not saying it shouldn't be this package. What we are saying

:10:23.:10:26.

is we don't think it is right that given that we are the major

:10:27.:10:30.

shareholders, and there is still a lot that RBS has to prove, and this

:10:31.:10:33.

is about paying for performance, don't forget, that we should concede

:10:34.:10:38.

to a request to go to the highest it can actually go to. They should be

:10:39.:10:44.

doing a decent job to make sure that the share price is good in the first

:10:45.:10:49.

place. Most people understand the his nurses have incentives people to

:10:50.:10:51.

work hard. Can I ask you on the housing issue.

:10:52.:10:58.

Can I just briefly come back on that? We had an extraordinary

:10:59.:11:01.

statement here by shadow minister saying that the taxpayer's interest

:11:02.:11:07.

takes second place to having a cheap eligible hit and saying no to

:11:08.:11:13.

bonuses. No, I didn't! You questioned Caroline diligently and

:11:14.:11:16.

made it clear that the taxpayers' interest was at stake here, but she

:11:17.:11:23.

said, no, we've got to have a cap. She is not interested in the resale

:11:24.:11:28.

value of RBS. That is a complete misrepresentation. We cannot get

:11:29.:11:34.

into a situation, in banking or energy or other areas, where people

:11:35.:11:39.

are paid good salaries for what they do, and I recognise that in terms of

:11:40.:11:42.

getting quality. Can I please answer? Can I please answer? She

:11:43.:11:49.

does have a point to answer. People are paid really good salaries in

:11:50.:12:06.

this profession... PHONE SINGS. Is that? I do apologise.

:12:07.:12:14.

People have good access to salaries, and part of their opportunity to

:12:15.:12:21.

earn their salary should be getting the best we can for taxpayers, and

:12:22.:12:25.

that is what is important. We will leave it there, and it means I don't

:12:26.:12:28.

have time to ask you a tough question about hiding. The Prime

:12:29.:12:35.

Minister boasting 400,000 new homes since he came to power, an average

:12:36.:12:44.

of 120,000 per year. The end of PMQs was cuddly? I said last week I

:12:45.:12:53.

thought it was possible that Ed Miller band and David Cameron had

:12:54.:13:00.

talked about it. -- Ed Miliband. It seemed as though they had agreed to

:13:01.:13:06.

calm it down, but today, the Prime Minister was taunting them for

:13:07.:13:10.

keeping it quiet. Ed Miliband is trying a lower key performance. It

:13:11.:13:15.

depends where you sit. If you are in the gallery, I think people would

:13:16.:13:20.

agree that the Tories will be thinking, our boy gave him a bit of

:13:21.:13:26.

a pasting. But then people will think, reasonable questions, asked

:13:27.:13:29.

reasonably, that is what we want from our leaders. We have to move

:13:30.:13:33.

on, because we have something interesting to talk about! What was

:13:34.:13:42.

that noise that it made? It was in fact fat bottomed girls by Queen. I

:13:43.:13:48.

wish you hadn't asked. Now, do you find British politics

:13:49.:13:52.

boring? Don't all shout at once! Well, despair not, because we need

:13:53.:13:55.

look no further than across the Channel for a spot of sport. It may

:13:56.:13:59.

have escaped your notice, but the President of France, Monsieur

:14:00.:14:02.

Hollande, is creating a bit of a stir. Not content with carrying out

:14:03.:14:05.

more economic U-turns than I've had foie gras, Monsieur Hollande, it

:14:06.:14:08.

appears, has been busy between the sheets. It's been reported widely,

:14:09.:14:11.

and not denied, that the President is having an affair with a

:14:12.:14:17.

41-year-old actress. It is probably in the French Constitution that the

:14:18.:14:20.

President have do that. His official companion, Valerie Trierweiler, is

:14:21.:14:23.

in hospital and said to be suffering from a "severe case of the blues".

:14:24.:14:28.

For those of you not up to speed on the whole affair, we turn to our

:14:29.:14:31.

friends from Taiwanese TV for an update.

:14:32.:15:14.

I think they made that better! Needless to say yesterday afternoon

:15:15.:15:20.

the eyes of the World's media focused intently on the Elysee

:15:21.:15:23.

Palace in Paris, where Monsieur Hollande was holding a long-awaited

:15:24.:15:26.

press conference. It turned out to be more of a speech. Would 600

:15:27.:15:30.

French journalists get to the truth? Let's see.

:15:31.:15:39.

TRANSLATION: Is Valerie Trierweiler still the first lady of France?

:15:40.:15:49.

Everybody in their private life goes through difficult periods. But

:15:50.:15:54.

private matters should be dealt with privately. That is the same for

:15:55.:16:00.

everyone concerned. So this is not the place all the time to discuss

:16:01.:16:01.

it. Well, we're joined now from Paris by

:16:02.:16:07.

the French political commentator Agnes Poirier. Welcome back to the

:16:08.:16:16.

show. This presidential press corps that was all there. Do they work for

:16:17.:16:20.

the government, or other independent journalists? I know. I have been

:16:21.:16:28.

hearing this since yesterday, and my British journalist friends feel

:16:29.:16:36.

quite superior. And why not! Andrew, or even Jeremy Paxman, I don't see

:16:37.:16:42.

you asking the Queen 12 times the same question. The head of state is

:16:43.:16:52.

the Prime Minister, and intruding on people's privacy is an alien concept

:16:53.:16:58.

for us. You have your culture, we have ours. So tell me, by what

:16:59.:17:06.

yardstick... And on the Queen issue, that is a total non sequitur. If she

:17:07.:17:11.

was having an affair with an actor, we would be chasing her, be in no

:17:12.:17:18.

doubt about that! You can see how Prince Charles and Princess Diana

:17:19.:17:24.

were chased. The Queen is the head of state. You wouldn't chase her.

:17:25.:17:31.

But unlike the Queen, he is an elected politician, and he runs the

:17:32.:17:36.

country, which the Queen doesn't. By what yardstick does a president who

:17:37.:17:42.

is running around Paris on a motorcycle having an affair in a

:17:43.:17:47.

flat owned by the Corsican Mafia and having the first lady at taxpayers

:17:48.:17:51.

expense who is no longer the first lady, by what yardstick is that not

:17:52.:17:57.

a matter of public interest? First of all, on the Corsican Mafia, it is

:17:58.:18:04.

not the case, so I think we should stick to the facts. I think it is a

:18:05.:18:09.

fair point, and I think we should accept that one, which is what is

:18:10.:18:13.

the status of the first partner, the French first lady? It is very much

:18:14.:18:19.

an American concept, and she doesn't have any status in France. That is

:18:20.:18:24.

obviously a real problem. I think the problem is that we got to know

:18:25.:18:28.

her. President Hollande introduced her to us, and it is now a tricky

:18:29.:18:35.

situation. Perhaps she should have remained, like Mr Merkel, doing her

:18:36.:18:46.

job in the shadows. That is where the mistake was made. It is one that

:18:47.:18:56.

I'm sure she bitterly regrets. It is not just we know who she is, we

:18:57.:19:03.

always know who she is, she has official offices paid for by the tax

:19:04.:19:09.

payer, she has five officials paid for by the taxpayer. She is allowed

:19:10.:19:12.

to use government and private jets and is allowed to use government,

:19:13.:19:18.

official residences. She is the first lady, so who is she?

:19:19.:19:25.

Precisely, you are right, but she could also be in the shadow. She

:19:26.:19:33.

could be alone in the Elysee Palace, and that would easier for

:19:34.:19:38.

her. It definitely must have been lonely. Who is he going to take to

:19:39.:19:48.

Washington? Well, he is going to tell us in the next few days. He has

:19:49.:19:54.

three weeks to think about it. If I were him I would go alone. I think

:19:55.:20:01.

that is very good advice. But how will the first lady feel if he

:20:02.:20:08.

leaves her behind? Well, you know, that is life. It is only a matter

:20:09.:20:15.

for them to resolve. It is of no concern of yours or your French

:20:16.:20:19.

colleagues that the man who has the nuclear trigger in his fingers, is

:20:20.:20:27.

running around on a motorbike at night, that does not worry you? It

:20:28.:20:38.

does not worry me at all. Really? We are definitely separated by more

:20:39.:20:43.

than 20 miles. Is his U turn going to work on economic policy? That is

:20:44.:20:47.

the only thing I am happy you asking about. Yesterday he talked to people

:20:48.:20:59.

for over two years and only three minutes were dedicated to his

:21:00.:21:03.

personal affairs. I am willing to be harsh on President Hollands on his

:21:04.:21:08.

economic holidays but not on his private life. Do we have much time

:21:09.:21:15.

to talk about his policies? You say you are willing to be harsh, but I

:21:16.:21:20.

watched the press conference, there wasn't a tough question on his U

:21:21.:21:25.

turn noneconomic policies from your colleagues, not one? It depends how

:21:26.:21:33.

you look at it. Did you read the press today, a lot of people were

:21:34.:21:38.

asking questions. What is he really proposing? Is it a U turn, as you

:21:39.:21:46.

say. He has always been a social democrat and not much of a

:21:47.:21:51.

socialist. David Cameron is so eager to see it from his French partners.

:21:52.:21:56.

Very well, thank you very much for joining us from Paris. Some people

:21:57.:22:03.

think the French are right and we are wrong. Some people think we are

:22:04.:22:08.

too intrusive as a media and we ought two robust as a media. And the

:22:09.:22:13.

French, as we have just seen their position, it is different on both

:22:14.:22:18.

and that would be a more mature way of behaving? We have been around

:22:19.:22:25.

long enough to know that if this had happened 15 or 20 years ago the

:22:26.:22:29.

newspaper and the media would have been talking about resignation. But

:22:30.:22:34.

that does not come into it. Clearly they want to know about the private

:22:35.:22:38.

lives of public people, not just politicians. I did not Askew that.

:22:39.:22:45.

Who handles things better, the British press or the French press?

:22:46.:22:50.

The French have always handled things differently. We know it is

:22:51.:22:55.

different, I was asking who handles it better? It is hard if you are the

:22:56.:23:02.

President or the Prime Minister. If you are having an affair and you are

:23:03.:23:06.

presenting yourself married to somebody else, to get away with

:23:07.:23:11.

that, to be honest. I can think of other intrusions into privacy I

:23:12.:23:16.

would battle more for in terms of the rights of the individual. Let's

:23:17.:23:22.

not forget, his present wife was his mistress from his first. It is a

:23:23.:23:28.

very French thing that goes on. They are not married, but she is a fact

:23:29.:23:40.

Diddley his wife. It is said, if you marry your mistress, you have

:23:41.:23:46.

created a vacancy. Should we allow former drug addicts

:23:47.:23:49.

and drunks to become magistrates? The bold suggestion that we should

:23:50.:23:53.

has come from The Policy Exchange think tank. It argues that it is

:23:54.:23:58.

time to re-look at the way magistrates work and their

:23:59.:24:00.

background so that we can breathe new life into the system. In this

:24:01.:24:01.

week's Soapbox, their head of Crime week's Soapbox, their head of Crime

:24:02.:24:03.

Justice explains why. Nine out of ten criminal cases are

:24:04.:24:20.

dealt with by volunteer magistrates. You might think they should be

:24:21.:24:25.

representative of the population. Sadly, they are not. It is

:24:26.:24:32.

overwhelmingly white, middle-class and old. In fact, over half of all

:24:33.:24:36.

magistrates are over the age of 60 and it is time for that to change.

:24:37.:24:43.

People that sit here should not be completely divorced from those who

:24:44.:24:46.

find themselves in the dock. That means changing the rules and the

:24:47.:24:52.

culture, so reformed offenders, including Addicks, who have

:24:53.:24:56.

successfully recovered are encouraged to apply. At the moment,

:24:57.:24:59.

anybody who is convicted of a criminal offence, including some

:25:00.:25:04.

minor motoring offences is effectively barred from doing so. We

:25:05.:25:09.

believe some ex-offenders would be well suited to dealing with the

:25:10.:25:12.

complex issues of dealing with those who suffer from addictions or mental

:25:13.:25:19.

problems. Not necessarily in a setup like this but in specialised,

:25:20.:25:22.

problem-solving courts back and take a more specialising approach. In the

:25:23.:25:29.

US, special courts and sobriety courts have cut costs of justice. It

:25:30.:25:34.

is time to limit the term and magistrate can serve to ten years

:25:35.:25:37.

rather than automatically retiring at 70. This will allow younger

:25:38.:25:42.

people to come in and shake things up. Magistrates were created 650

:25:43.:25:54.

years ago and they have always been the pillars of our communities. But

:25:55.:26:00.

in the modern world, whether you are allowed to become one has got to be

:26:01.:26:04.

more fun if you move in the same social circle as other magistrates.

:26:05.:26:08.

We have got to breathe more life into the system so we can cut

:26:09.:26:12.

reoffending and stop people coming back to places like this.

:26:13.:26:22.

Max Chambers is here. Do you have a problem with older magistrates

:26:23.:26:26.

because some people say they have the experience of life to do the

:26:27.:26:29.

job? We have to recognise there is an issue. In the West Midlands there

:26:30.:26:36.

are 4500 magistrate but only 118 of them are below the age of 40. When

:26:37.:26:41.

you think of the people they are dealing with they are invariably

:26:42.:26:45.

younger men and there is a disconnect. So having a more diverse

:26:46.:26:50.

magistrate, a more balanced profile and a wider set of experiences will

:26:51.:26:54.

help. How would you get more young people to become magistrate?

:26:55.:27:00.

Magistrates at the moment are appointed by committees of

:27:01.:27:05.

magistrates. So they are just recruiting like-minded people, how

:27:06.:27:09.

do you break that? We are calling for a proactive policy saying, who

:27:10.:27:15.

do we want to be presiding over these cases and for what affect? In

:27:16.:27:19.

other parts of the world they are using previous offenders and Addicks

:27:20.:27:26.

and we think it should be a proactive policy that magistrates

:27:27.:27:31.

should be pursuing. The interesting idea is to allow former criminals,

:27:32.:27:35.

not just people who have committed minor offences, because they would

:27:36.:27:41.

have some empathy. You think it would ring down reoffending, what

:27:42.:27:45.

would be the point? Lots of former drug addicts have a passion for

:27:46.:27:51.

helping fellow addicts recover and get clean. They understand

:27:52.:27:54.

Temptations, the mindset and the excuses people can make. We think

:27:55.:27:59.

they would be well placed to support people and help themselves out.

:28:00.:28:03.

Would you go for that? The reformed criminals? At the moment if you have

:28:04.:28:10.

a spent conviction you can be considered to be a magistrate. It

:28:11.:28:15.

should be considered, the seriousness of the offence, how long

:28:16.:28:18.

ago it was. Max raises a good point on diversity, they of volunteers and

:28:19.:28:24.

unpaid. A lot of young people are still trying to earn their money and

:28:25.:28:28.

that is why you get a lot of people who are older. We will put you out

:28:29.:28:35.

of your misery on Guess the year. 1933. Caroline, hit the red button.

:28:36.:28:47.

Jenny Johnson. That is it, the 1pm news is starting on BBC One. I will

:28:48.:28:51.

be back at noon. Danny Finkelstein will be here, but

:28:52.:28:55.

I won't I am afraid. I am off!

:28:56.:29:01.

Andrew Neil and Jo Coburn with live coverage of Prime Minister's Questions and the latest political news, interviews and debate. With justice minister Shailesh Vara and shadow energy secretary Caroline Flint. The Guess the Year competition closes at 12.30pm during the live broadcast of this programme.


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