27/06/2014 Daily Politics


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David Cameron takes his battle against Jean Claude Juncker to


Brussels, where all the signs are he'll fail to stop his appointment


Mr Cameron remains defiant though, insisting he'll force other leaders


to vote on the issue and warning of the need to embrace reform.


After the row over Oxfam's poster campaign, we ask how political


And what impact will the Bank of England Governor's new rules


on mortgage lending have on Britain's housing market?


All that in the next hour and with us for the whole programme


today I'm joined by two estimable political commentators -


Iain Martin from the Telegraph and Zoe Williams of the Guardian.


Now while all eyes are on David Cameron and


his epic battle in Brussels against the appointment of Jean Claude


Juncker, European leaders have other business to attend to today.


The President of the Ukraine is also in Brussels to sign the


Association Agreement with the EU which sparked last year's coup and


Today's events do not please Vladimir Putin.


Here's his spokesman, Sergei Glazyev, speaking to


the BBC's Steve Rosenberg. Given it was his attempt to get closer to


Europe that got the Russians wild in the first place, will face stop


things up again? Obviously that is the question one asks, but the EU


cannot stay out of this forever. The constant refrain is maybe if we


don't say too much of this will go away, or Vladimir Putin will get


what he wants and his ambitions will be over. At some point the bodies


that were set up to establish equilibria and peace have got to put


their cards on the table. Whether it is exit or not, I don't see what


they can do. The Russians don't like the idea of being encircled. They


are not being encircled militarily, obviously, but they don't like


people that are in the near sphere of influence getting muscled in on


by the Europeans. Absolutely. Vladimir is a fascinating guy. He


stood against Putin in 2004. It suggests that he is a pretty brave


guy and then he was hired in 2012 by Putin to set up the customs union


because the Russians wanted to control most of the former Soviet


states. It talks a lot to what is happening with Mr Juncker at the


moment. We think of Europe from a British point of view but if you


look at the opinion polls attacking David Cameron, that is really about


the rise of Russia and the Polish fear of a resurgent Russia, and if


the polls see anyone causing disruption to European Union unity,


that is a threat. That is such an interesting point of view. In


discourse we have seen nobody as a territorial threat. But if they


are... That is why Mr Cameron's erstwhile ally the polls are now


siding with Germany. They have to stick with Germany like glue. It is


fascinating. I wish it was not quite so close.


It would be worth seeing what the fallout is. David Cameron is also in


Brussels today. The Finnish PM this morning said


that the people of the UK "need to wake up and smell the coffee" when


it comes to the European Union. So, as Jean Claude Juncker looks set


to get the top job at the European Commission, what else is brewing


in the world of European politics? A new President of the European


Council will have to be chosen: the Danish Prime Minister Helle


Thorning-Schmidt has been tipped as a possible contender to take


over from Hermann van Rompuy. The EU also needs to find


a new foreign policy chief, known as the High Representative


for Foreign Affairs. The Italian Foreign Minister,


Federica Mogherini, is a name There also some key economic


portfolios in the Commission that member states


are keen to get their hands on: competition,


economic and monetary affairs, Andrew Lansley is seen


a leading candidate to be sent to Brussels as a Commissioner but it's


by no means assured that the UK will And finally the European Parliament


will choose a new President: Martin Schulz, the previous


president, could well get the job As he arrived


in Brussels this morning, David Cameron reiterated his


opposition to Jean-Claude Juncker. The European elections showed there


is huge disquiet about the way the European Union works. Yet, the


response, I believe, will be wrong on two grounds. It is not right for


the elected heads of government of the European countries to give up


their right to nominate the head of the European Commission, the most


important role in Europe. That is a bad principle and it is the wrong


person. He has been at the heart of the project to increase the power of


Brussels the power of nation states for his entire working life. He is


not the right person. I am very clear about right thing to do. You


have to stand up for what you believe and vote accordingly. Let's


speak to our political editor. Those voters who care about it, which is a


minority, they are on his side and back benches love it. What is being


said about it? Was a poll done by the financial Times which asked


voters what they would think of the Prime Minister losing but fighting.


Losing but fighting is popular. He did not think it would be like this.


He thought the Germans were onside and were the Swedes and the Danes.


One by one, as Angela Merkel changed her mind, all the others changed


theirs as well and he finds himself on his own. He is trying to snatch


some form of moral victory for the defeat for his negotiating strategy


by saying to voters at home, as well as people here in Brussels, you


might think I am the sort of guy who changes his mind when I am on the


losing side, I might do a deal here or a deal that would take a


compromise, I will not. This is where I stand. This is what I do.


This man is being chosen by a process he does not believe in. Am I


right in detecting that a lot of the other European leaders are bit fed


up with them? The criticism is getting a bit bitter about Mr


Cameron. The wake up and smell the costly line was directed at the


British voter rather than David Cameron. You can stand as the cars


roll up and Prime Ministers and presidents come to the cameras and


talk. Many of them are being asked by their own media in the own


languages about David Cameron. I managed to speak to quite a few of


them in English. They go out of their way and say, yes, David


Cameron loses today but we do not want them to leave. The Danish Prime


Minister was expected to be a key ally. It was about Britain being


back in the game after today. What they are trying to do is to say,


look, forget the man, let's look at the agenda for the next five years


in the EU being agreed here. They claimed that is more to British


tastes than it might otherwise have been. I think we know the outcome


today. What happens after that? Does the bitterness linger on and begin


to affect European attitudes towards Britain in other matters? It clearly


has to be a danger that European leaders think maybe there is nothing


we can do or say. Maybe David Cameron has made his mind that he


constantly has to be at war with us. Maybe the British people are


beginning to make their minds up to go. British diplomats are determined


that not happen. There certainly is this case that when Angela Merkel


talked yesterday, she used the phrase, good compromises for


Britain. There may be a pang of conscience in the mind of the German


Chancellor. Maybe I did give him the suggestion I was onside and I now


have to give him a lot in return. What the British Government is


banking on is there are a lot of countries, for all they find Britain


irritating and these rows frustrating, like Britain onside in


particular over arguments about free trade. If you are a German, a


Swede, a Dane or a Dutchman, you want to free market for use within


the EU, you do not want Germany to be alone, if you like, running what


one British official called the Club Med of Nations. You look like you


are in the Club Med right now, it is so bright. Thank you for joining us!


Watch out for the sun! The BBC political editor marking our card as


always. At this stage, we had hoped to be joined by Sajjad Karim, but he


is not here at the moment. Tell us about Jean Claude Juncker. Why would


he make a good president? You said we would be backing him. We have not


decided that yet. We want that the council nominates Jean Claude


Juncker. He will be running for the jobs. It would be nice if the Greens


had got in those seats. They did not. Once he is nominated, we want


to have a hearing with him in our group and have all the green members


of the European Parliament asking questions to him and we will see


what his programme is. The way Mr Cameron wants to reform Europe, and


I agree you have to change things, I actually agree when he says that we


need to really change the way the European works. Part of that is more


democracy, more solidarity, more of a social union. I want to see what


Jean Claude Juncker proposes in those areas when it comes to


fighting climate change and coming out of the crisis. We will not buy a


less Europe programme like Mr Cameron wants to see it. Did you say


that Jean Claude Juncker had a Cameron programme? Well, I mean,


they're clearly as to be a deal. Jean Claude Juncker will be


nominated and now be a lot of pressure on him. We want to hear


from Jean Claude Juncker what he proposes and how he wants to ensure


that peoples worries about social issues are important, how he wants


to create jobs and fight climate change. It is important for us and I


would find it very problematic if now the deal for Mr Cameron is that


now they nominate Jean Claude Juncker but then he gets a programme


which is completely a Tory one. Your line from Berlin is breaking up a


bit. Stick with us we are going to stick with you. We now have Sajjad


Karim with us who has joined us in the studio in London. Why don't you


want Jean Claude Juncker when almost everyone else in Europe seems to be


gathering around him? It is quite clear if you look at the recent


European Parliament elections, people are not happy with the status


quo as it is. Mr Juncker is a face from the past and it is a time now


for new faces and new ideas, a wholesale reform programme to take


place. Mr Juncker is simply not an individual who has a record that


would stand to be tested that he is the man who can deliver this. Europe


is divided over Jean-Claude Juncker. We have just heard from the


Green party that they have not yet made up their minds. What Mr Cameron


has done, instead of being divided against Mr Juncker, Europe is now


divided against Mr Cameron. We have ensured that this process becomes


much more transparent. If you look at what the treaties say, we have


acted in accordance with that. We are taking into account the European


Parliament election results but the responsibility remains with the


heads of state in Council and consultation takes a part of the


process as is required under the Lisbon Treaty, and that is exactly


what is happening now. Ska Keller, I hope the line has restored itself.


If not Mr Juncker for the Green party, who? You have not got another


choice, have you? As I said, we want Mr Juncker to be nominated by the


council. He has the right to find a majority in the Parliament. Whether


we are part of the majority, we will see if that is linked to the


programme. INAUDIBLE. I am sorry but if the bigger parties did not manage


to find someone among them bringing the fresh new ideas, new and fresh


faces, then I am really sorry. They could have put forward their own


candidate but Mr Juncker was backed by many heads of state. INAUDIBLE. I


really have to apologise. I have got to interrupt you. I am fascinated by


what you are saying but there is a technical problem on the line.


Please come back onto the programme when we get the line sorted out on


another day and we can hear your perspective. Many apologies to you


but thank you for what you have told us so far. We hope we can get you


back on the programme. Where does this leave Mr Cameron? It leaves him


isolated. Perversely in this case it is probably not a bad place to be.


In terms of domestic politics? Domestically it is perfectly healthy


that he finds himself in this position. For the European Union it


is an absolute catastrophe. This is a very significant, important


historical turning point, potentially, and this could be the


week that the door is opened to Britain leaving and I speak as


someone in favour of reform and trying to stay in. But in choosing


Jean-Claude Juncker, the rest of Europe is essentially saying that


kind of reform that Britain once is off the table. The European election


showed that there was a lot of unhappiness with the way Europe is


going across the continent at the moment. Some people will see it as a


bit of a slap in the face that you then choose as the new President


someone synonymous with the old way of doing things. Look, he is


synonymous with the old way of doing things but he does have a programme


of increased federalism and the European line, which is true, is


that you cannot have a currency that you all share if you do not have


other mechanisms that you all share. But we don't all share it. We don't,


obviously. So federalism for the eurozone or the EU? We don't share


it but we cannot interfere with their attempts to draw it together.


But he is President of the EU, not the eurozone. We have to understand


their priorities as people try to get out of depression in many


cases, and keep their currencies together, which are different to our


priorities. I don't see David Cameron in an involved chess game,


ten moves ahead of anyone else, instead I see a man up turning the


chessboard and saying he does not play test because he has read that


is what the British opinion polls want him to say. That might work


well domestically. Does Mr Juncker's appointment matter in the


end in terms of Mr Cameron's reform agenda and the repatriation of


power? The people who determined that in the end will be the


Chancellor of Germany and the President of France. Does it really


matter if Mr Juncker is there or not? What does matter is the work


programme that he will have to follow. I imagine that is the very


thing that will be debated in Belgium right now. We have to make


sure the work programme is right. We shouldn't lose sight of the fact


this is not the only top job on offer at the moment in Brussels.


There are other very significant positions, where if we can manoeuvre


and get our people into place, we stand to benefit greatly. What is


happening here, actually I am very encouraged by it. For the first time


we are seeing European politics is being made transparent. When was the


last time we saw this kind of debate taking place right across Europe


about the types of personalities we need to have in these important


positions? It is hardly transparent with the federalists claiming Mr


Juncker is the choice of the European voters. The number of


voters in Germany who knew that Mr Juncker was a candidate could fit


into one Munich beer Seller! You are the Conservative nominating


President. It is not going to happen, is it? We have put forward a


strong programme. I did not ask about the programme. I said it would


not happen. Yesterday evening and important publication in Brussels


called the European Voice came out and said that the linkage of the


European Parliament's presidency with the European Commission


presidency by Martin Schultz is the wrong thing for him to do and this


is an exercise of deceit. Now it is up to the MEPs. They have a secret


vote as to whether they fall into line with this exercise of defeat.


Or do they stand for what European citizens want? Will you give us the


first interview? I will be on the first train over, Andrew. Having


seen our link to Brussels, I am not surprised you will come back on the


train! Thank you! How careful the British charities need to be about


straying into British politics? Should politicians be more relaxed


when charities turned their campaigns to policy? This follows


her out over an Oxford -- a row over an Oxfam poster which politicians


said amounted to campaigning. Politicians like being associated


with charities and charitable works and make no mistake, charities and


enjoy and benefit from link to politicians. But recently one of the


Prime Minister's fold complained that one charity had stopped being a


charity and was sailing dangerously close to being a group of


politicians with an agenda that looked very similar to that of the


Labour Party. The perfect storm poster was Oxfam promoting a report


it was publishing on ongoing work that it is calling breadline


Britain. But it got caught in a storm of its own. We have the


Government giving unrestricted grants to charities and then


charities using that money to lobby the charity that money to lobby the


charity I think that is an abuse and it should come to an end. -- that


money to lobby the Government. I am all for lobbying. But if you give


money to Oxfam you think it will alleviate poverty in poor parts of


the world and not be involved in politics in this country. Oxfam


defended themselves on their website. They said they'd do it


straight into policy areas but they are not politically biased. They are


very careful to make sure they are not party politically aligned. I


know that of Oxfam. I know that of other reputable development


agencies. That does not mean they are not political and that is where


people get confused. Political means dealing with issues like poverty and


riots and they are political issues. Oxfam and other major charities


lobby Government all the time, but for the MP who made the complaint,


there is a wider problem. If you look at the list of some of the


so-called charity leaders who attacked me in The Times newspaper


recently, a good number of them have stood for the Labour Party in


general elections, they have advised Gordon Brown and Tony Blair, and


they are coming into charities and using their position to campaign


against people who wear their political opponents. The sad thing


for me is the debate becomes whether it is right to say this rather than


a debate about poverty, what causes it and what can be done. We should


not get off into focusing on Oxfam's poster. Many charities


survive on donations alone but some receive grants from Government.


Critics of the Oxfam policy say that greater transparency and


accountability of how taxpayers' money is spent would be better. The


charity says they are looking into the post and will report on whether


it breached charity guidelines soon. -- the poster. Did they crossed the


line? Absolutely. When I saw it I thought it was a Labour Party


poster. People who go into Oxfam stores and donate money to Oxfam, I


think they have a fairly clear idea that Oxfam is about dealing with


famine and hunger and poverty abroad. That is the principal point.


I think the danger here is that some of the big charities appear to have


been captured by people who would really like to be in politics in


Whitehall, running things, but in the five years that they are not


they can get a gig outside and behave politically. They should


stick to charity. If that were a Labour Party campaign poster, I


would be delighted if the Labour Party were saying things that French


ad about what is wrong. It was not party political. All poverty is


political, as a spokesperson said. The idea that you cannot raise money


for poverty is preposterous. The idea that Oxfam should be


campaigning abroad is very strange. If you can see people below the


poverty line having trouble putting food on their own tables in your own


country, to say we only deal with Tanzania is perverse. And


furthermore, the reason the Trussell Trust was set up was because the


founder of it was working abroad and in Salisbury he did a phone in and


somebody rang up and said this is all very well but I cannot even feed


my own children. OK, set up a charity and if someone wants to


campaign on poverty in the UK, do that, fine, no problem. It is the


deceit. If you ask most people, and I have certainly bought things from


an Oxfam book store and people do, I think I would now think twice about


it after that poster. You only want poor people abroad to get money but


not people in England. I think the pollution of a big, respected


charity who does fantastic work abroad, the pollution of that by


political hacks is disgraceful. We have to move on but an interesting


debate. It has been an interesting week in politics. Here is our 60


secondary cap. -- recapture. Andy Coulson was found guilty of phone


hacking. The PM said sorry for hiring him. I am really sorry for


hiring him. It was the wrong decision and I'm clear about that.


The judge was hacked off with him for talking about a live case. The


debate continues about ISAs. William Hague went to Baghdad for a flying


visit. You wait ages for a high speed railway line and then a third


one turns up as the Chancellor announced the bozos to improve


connections up North. I am here to -- proposals to improve connections


up North. Instead of popping the housing bubble, the Bank of England


went more of a gentle fizzing, with curbs on mortgage lenders. No more


than 15% of any number of total mortgages should be at or above 4.5


times the borrower's income. That was the governor of the Bank of


England bringing in curbs on mortgage lending to take heat out of


the market especially in London and the South East. They also indicated


on the Today programme that interest rates would not go above 3% even by


2017. That is the end of the programme for today. Thank you to


our guests. I will be back on Sunday on BBC One with Sunday Politics and


before then on Newsnight. Try to join me. Goodbye.


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