18/09/2014 Daily Politics


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On the day the people of Scotland head to the polls to determine


They're expected to vote in record numbers.


Alex Salmond and Alistair Darling led the way this morning to


the polling booths, where they face one simple question.


Should Scotland be an independent country?


The US House of Representatives has approved


President Obama's plan to arm and train moderate Syrian rebels.


But is the international community doing enough to drive back IS?


Is the House of Lords getting too big for it's boots?


It's certainly not getting any smaller and there are calls


And I'm a politician, get me out of here.


We'll be asking what it must be like governing from the Aussie outback.


All that in the next hour and with us for the duration former


Foreign Office Minister, and former Deputy Secretary General of the


First to Scotland, where 97% of those elligible to vote


That's 4.3 million registered voters.


The turnout is expected to be much higher than a general election.


We don't talk issues on voting day but let's cross to the BBC's


Assistant Political Editor, Norman Smith in Glasgow to talk logistics.


Norman, have we seen early signs yet of this predicted big turnout? I


think we have actually, Andrew, certainly if you think of most


general elections, early doors in the morning they are usually one man


and a dog at the polling station. The polling stations here have had


queues outside them really, not all of them, but quite a lot have had


queueing outside them from early in the morning which would suggest yes,


this indeed will be a huge turnout. The weather is you know, dry and


mild, although frankly searches the intensity of the debate even if it


was snowing and hailstorms people would still go to the polls! If you


look at the postal vote, something like 80% of those has been


returned. In Edinburgh, the City Council are saying 89% of postal


votes have been returned. We are on course I think for the biggest


turnout possibly we have seen in any election in the UK or Scotland. What


we are seeing today, frankly, is an extraordinarily, the huge effort by


both sides to try to make sure they get the vote out. Such is the


closeness of the polls, this may well hinge on which side is better


able to get out of the vote. The no say they have volunteers in every


single council ward, the yes campaign say they have 20,000


volunteers knocking on doors and helping people to the polling


stations. There is an old quote which goes along the lines of, in


politics, ideas is important but organisation is even more


important. Translated into the modern context this means, is that


you got to get your vote out. At the end of the day that could actually


be the deciding factor despite the months of the arguments. The polling


stations will close at ten o'clock, if they are still queueing, have


they made any provision for that? If you turn of the last minute and you


are in the queue, you are OK, you will still get to vote, it is not


like the shutter comes down at ten o'clock and you miss your


once-in-a-lifetime chance. You'll still get the vote. In terms of the


results, they will start coming in from about two o'clock. The real


benchmark moment, I think though, will not come until very late into


the early morning, probably between 5-6 AM. We are expecting the results


shortly after 6am, that is what accounting officer said. Five


o'clock seems to me, if you are wanting to know when you should get


up, I would get up at 5am. At five, we will get Edinburgh and Glasgow,


together they make up about 20% of the vote. Glasgow may well be the


critical factor. Whether the Labour vote in Glasgow holds up already


goes to the Nationalists. We should get a result somewhere between 6-7.


All sorts of wrinkles, there could be recounts and problems getting the


votes out from the islands, it could be later. We want people to join us


at 10:40pm, on BBC1 tonight, stick with us for the direction. LAUGHTER


-- for the duration. Results will be declared in the 32 local districts


in Scotland, a bit like a general election in that sense. Explain this


to me: There can be a recount in each of the districts but there


cannot be a recount on the total, is that right? If we have a result


which says one side gets, I don't know, 49.5% of the vote and the


other side gets 50.5%, and everybody says that's very close, let's


recount. It's too late. One we get to the final numbers it is too late.


You can only recount at the local level, only at the local level can


you have the recount. You cannot do it on a national level, they would


be done at the local authority level, it does not matter how close


it is, even if it is decided by one vote that is the outcome. One vote


could determine the future of Scotland and the United Kingdom. It


will determine the future of the United Kingdom because there will be


massive constitutional change, whatever happens. We will have to


unpick pensions and welfare and defence, oil, debt, massive


upheaval. With the No vote, there will be massive constitutional


change too, it is hard to see how the English, Welsh and Northern


Irish will say that's fine, you have more powers and we will sit and do


nothing. Thank you for joining us try and grab some sleep before this


evening. CHUCKLES I don't think there will be much


sleep. No. CHUCKLES The former Labour Minister Alan


Johnson has suggested Ed Miliband should have spent time doing


something else before entering politics, so the question


for today is: At the end of the show Mark


will give us the correct answer. Overnight the US House of


Representatives approved President Obama's plan to train and arm the


moderate Syrian opposition taking It comes a week after the President


outlined his new, broader strategy to combat the


militant group which is operating Here the Foreign Secretary,


Philip Hammond, has said the UK will play a "leading role" in the


international effort to combat IS. What that role will be, is not yet


clear. So far the US has carried out


174 airstrikes across Iraq. The action has helped halt


the advance of IS militants: in August Iraqi army and


Kurdish Peshmerga forces, assisted by American airstrikes,


recaptured the Mosul dam The UK has


so far sent ?1.6 million worth of weapons and ammunition to


the Kurdish Peshmerga forces who However, one British hostage,


David Haines, has already been Another, Alan Henning,


has also been threatened. Australia has also said it will send


600 military personnel, including special forces troops,


and eight fighter jets. Overnight President Obama won


congressional approval for a 500 million dollar plan to arm


the moderate Syrian opposition. But the president reiterated that he


would not be committing US boots A little earlier I spoke to the


Conservative MP Adam Holloway via Skype, so apologies for the quality


of the line. He is on a fact-finding mission in northern Iraq. I asked


him if he had seen the effects of So what the air strikes have done is


they've made it impossible now for IS to form up together and hammer


down the road to attack cities. Because it is too dangerous for them


to congregate. They have been very important. Even so, 45 ministers not


sound very far away, you must have spoken to residents of Irbil, how


imminent do they think the threat still is? With my colleagues I went


down to the front line a couple of days ago. It is very quiet down


there. You can imagine. The Peshmerga, the local Kurdish


forces, they are equipped for fighting in mountains, they are not


equipped for fighting on the flat ground which is the front line. So


they don't have the long-range weapons yet. So those air strikes


are very, very important. As one Peshmerga commander put it to me, he


said, we woke up one morning to find that we had a 1000 kilometre front


line with the most dangerous organisation in the world, they need


help. Do they need more weapons and ammunition than is being sent to


them currently? There is a lot coming in. Overnight at the airport


planes were arriving. Certainly on the front of line where we were at,


the commander told us he had not got any additional weapons. But look,


that is about defending the Kurdish areas. But this is not a military


problem. This is a political problem... You know, we imagine that


the answer to a problem like this, is just to bomb everyone, it's not.


ISIS have not appeared and taken over this chunk of Iraq by accident,


they have taken over by the -- because the Sunni groups were fed up


with the Shia government in Baghdad. When people came to Mosul,


a lot of the locals felt it was better living with ISIS than it was


living with the Shias, the only difference is that ISIS would not


let them smoke. What response should the UK Government to take on is it


time to sign up for air strikes with the Americans in Iraq and Syria?


Absolutely not, this is not a military problem, this is a


political problem. Australia is now deploying military capabilities. We


will be joined by a representative of the Australian government in a


moment. Mark Malloch Brown. Mr Obama talking


about arming the "moderate" Syrian Rebels, Hillary Clinton wanted him


to do that in 2012 when it was clear who the moderates were. He didn't do


it. Isn't he two years too late? It is playing catch-up but it doesn't


mean it's not worth doing, and there's a real need to build a


moderate middle. But not much to play with here, I mean, too little


too late probably. A lot of people will feel because the moderates have


been on the defensive, they are the secular Rebels rather than the


moderates, they've been on the defensive the two years. They've


taken a lot of defeat at the hands of the Islamists. You give them


these weapons and once again they could easily end up in the hands of


the Islamists. That's the real risk and you will find from the officials


briefing Congress, these weapons will be put in carefully and slowly


to make sure that they are going into reliable hands. But when we see


that ISIS's fighting power comes from weapons that they captured from


the Iraqis, American weapons, this is a real risk. But for the


president, the alternative that somebody raised, that he made a deal


with President Assad to combine to take on ISIS, was a much less


palatable option. It would be even more end raging to Sunni opinion in


the region and it would have been a U-turn which would have been an


acceptable for Western opinion. -- an acceptable.


, we become the -- isn't there the danger that we now become the air


force for the Peshmerga forces and any other forces on the ground? Yes,


this is what we may end up doing. Is this wise? I think it is


inevitable, Andrew, because nobody else is coming forward to do this.


The Arab world has affected their forces... Why don't they use them?


-- effective air forces. I would agree, it is time you say, the Arab


world, don't you care what is happening in your region? These


people are a greater threat to the national security of the Arab world


than they are to the United Kingdom and the United States. Yet they seem


to be implying, let us do it again, that's exactly playing into the


hands of ISIS, that is what they want us to do. We then take the lead


in the air and on the ground and ISIS will present that as the evil


West against the Muslim world which is their intention.


Qatar has some undercover involvement with ISIS, the United


Arab Emirates is different and I am sure we will see some kind of


support. In that sense, to give President Obama and John Kerry their


due, they are trying to do this the way the first Gulf War was done and


not the second Iraq conflict. They are trying to build a coalition of


the willing, the secretary has been to the Middle East and has talked to


these governments, tried to get some kind of commitment from them. I


think the Americans understand the issue as much as we do. But if you


are the UAE, or Qatar, you don't really want to get involved, there


is no terrorism in these countries. They stay out of things, they are


prospering. Two of the richest city states, Joe Hart and Dubai, and Abu


Dhabi, -- These are very small states which


already feel quite beleaguered in their neighbourhood with Iran just


across the strait from them. And, frankly, they cannot survive growing


turbulence in the region. They can't be kind of isolated islands from


this. So, you are right, they hate to do something which would import


terrorism into their states, but equally, theyp can't allow the world


and themselves to stand idly by as ISIS consolidates itself. I would


suggest to you, that it is unconceivable that the UAE or Saudis


or Qatar would deploy ground troops against Isil It is unlikely but


shouldn't be inconceivable because frankly, they need to start thinking


about how they are going to stop this huge problem that is going to


contaminate the Middle East. It cannot just be us. The public, you


know, our public here, have no appetite for us putting ground


troops in. Neither has the Government. But, in the end, perhaps


we should never, ever say - we will never, ever do anything. When I


useded to negotiate, as Mark used, to we would never, ever give away a


card that we hold in our hand easily. I will never say that we


would never put ground troops in on the ground because actually, we


might have to, if we were directly threatened, Andrew. This is he a us,


but as a military man, would you like to give us your assessment of


the fighting capabilities of the UAE, Saudi and Qatar forces? Not


particularly, but you are going to press me so the answer is, not


great. So we cannot put too much faith in them. No. We are down to


arming the permother capital gains tax which does know how to fight,


particularly if they have modern weapons -- the Peshmerga.


And to hoping that the Americans can do something to revive and put some


steel into the Iraqi Army. Exactly and that's what we are hoping to do


and this is' what American and British intentions will be. I think


it is important, Adam Holloway's point in the interview, in which he


said the ultimate solution is a political solution. We have to look


at the military as containing the problem, recovering the major cities


back into Government hands but then it is - how do you reenfranchise the


sunnies? How do you remove their sense of grievance which lets them


breed movements like ISIS. But essentially ly a sunny-Shia civil


war. -- a Sunni-Shia civil war? I think it is generational. It took 30


years in Europe. This is producing religious-based fanatic terrorist


organisations because their religious majority, their fellow


co-religionists, feel they are excluded from the politics of the


countries where they aring living. So that, is only something, that


this region can do, by creating much more inclusive, much more


accountable, much more democratic government structures than this


strange mixture of authoritarianism and religious exclusionism that we


have at the moment. But we are seeing the rewriting of the Middle


East map. The Middle East map was rewritten during the First World War


and it was implemented. It has broadly stayed like that. These are


the boundaries since then. It's now been redrawn again. It is going to


be redrawn by forces on the ground. Undoubted youly Undoubted ly, that's


why I say we are in this for a generation. That's again, why these


air strikes need to be put into context. They need to be short and


decisive. You do not want a generation-long commitment of


Western Forces resolving something that only Arabs can solve for


themselves. Are we going, "we", Britain, going to join the Americans


and probably now the Australians in air strikes? Probably. We may have


no choice. We don't want to, but we may have no choice.


Is there enough spoer from MPs? Doer support. I think it is quite a lot


of support from MPs. From both sides of the House. I'm talking about


friends in the Labour Party and on the backbenches. But the problem is,


we don't want to go further. What did you make of the remarks of the


former Attorney-General, Dominic Grieve, now a backbench colleague of


yours on the Conservative side, who hold Jo yesterday that any mission


had to be limited to protecting civilians, not removing IS? That's


his view. We might have to have a different view to that, but that's


Dominic's view. I deeply respect that. He is a good bloke. But you


don't share it, do you? I don't. My view is that if we are about to see


a major advance, we may well have to take them on from the air.


His implication was it wouldn't be legal to do that, it would have to


be framed with a humanitarian view with limited air strikes to protect


the civil ian population -- civilian population, contain, not defeat.


Well if you can do, that great. But in the end when you have these


people burying hundreds of people, in the hand. That's humanitarian


with me When they are attacking ISIS in in Iraqi territory, all we need


is the invitation of the government. Syria he was talking bflt You have


more of a point there in Syrian. The Syrian Government has tow invite you


-- Syrian Government who has to invite you in or you have to go to


the UN. And we don't talk to them. Today, over 100 British Muslim


imams, organisations and individuals have signed a statement calling for


the release of the British hostage They also express their "horror and


revulsion" at the killing of another hostage, David Haines, and call


the group "un-Islamic fanatics". One of those who signed up to the


letter, Muddassar Ahmed, he joins us Why, at this particular time, as Mr


Henning was taken captive in December last year? It wasn't made


public. People weren't aware of the issue. I thought the family were


keeping it - wanted a slightly lower profile on the issue but I thought


it's an important step that this letter was eventually written and


pulled together. I think it represents a very wide range of


British Muslim opinion Do you accept that wide range, though it may be,


that it is not the kind of opinion that there is folks -- the folks at


IS will have any interest in listening to? I don't know. I think


one thing that's very important is that IS are spoking to in a


terminology and a language they understand. I think what is


interesting here is that the British Muslims that went with Alan to Syria


and travelled with him, are the ones that are leading the calls for him


to be released. I think it is interesting - of course it is not


crystal clear how they will respond - but I don't suppose we will be


able to ignore it easily. Should such robust statements not have come


before so many young British Muslims went to join IS? I think that the -


I think there have been statements before. I think a lot of work has


been done by the Muslim community in Britain to ensure that young British


Muslims don't go out there. It hasn't worked, has it? It is


interesting. It has and it hasn't. It is interesting to see - we have


been hearing reports that there are young British Muslims out there that


want to come back, that realise they have made a mistake. Remember there


was a huge effort by young British Muslims to go out and help the


humanitarian aid in Syria and the fog of war, some young men made the


decision to join IS. It is interesting and for me heartening to


hear that some want to come back. We need to be prepared and open,


because there is nothing more powerful than having a young British


Muslim who is been out there, who is disenchanted and realised that ISIS


has nothing to do with Islam and Muslims, to come back and tell the


rest of us. If they are genuine. Well, that's something we need to


figure out in due course. But, I think it may well be, but we need to


be open to that responsibility. -- possibility. Do we have much


evidence? Because it is almost taken, almost as an assumption, that


the worst of the ones who are out there, have been radicalised by


mosques or imams in Britain. Some of the backgrounds of the ones I have


seen, would suggest that they are no better, really than gangsters, that


they have not really had anything to do with the mosques or religion in


Britain and they are simply now being offered a bigger, more grisly


playing field for their gangsterism? I think that's riechlted you have


think the the nail on the head. These young men going out there seem


to be less motivated by Islam and more motivated by other reasons and


perhaps some is linked to lower social economic backgrounds they are


from and they are being attracted or disenp chanted by their and the to


live here, so they are being attracted to go out there and fight


in this certain way. I think that, you know, it is important that we


find ways - that part of the solution here is finding long-term


ways to bring these people and make them feel more part of British


society as a whole. In the short term, we knead to be open to the


fact that some have simply made a mistake and we need to be able to


let them integrate normally back into society when they come back.


What do you think now could be done? What is the single biggest thing we


can do, now, to stop more young British Muslims going to join the


terrorists? I think there is a couple of things. First of all, the


letter that happened today is a great example of something positive,


that shows that the vast majority of British Muslims are sick and tired


of ISIS and are horrified, as everybody else is, by the crimes


that they have committed and are about to commit. So, understanding


those voices, encourages those voices to speak out more is one


step. I think the other thing that might be helpful in this, is that


not speaking to ISIS, in terms of the way they want us to address them


- so, there is nothing Islamic about them, they are not a state. They


don't have the backing of Islamic scholars in the region. In fact,


what they have done, is they have destroyed centuries' old Islamic


civilisation in Iraq. Everything about them is anti-Islamic. We need


to frame it in that sense. Thank you for joining us and explaining the


reasons hyped your statement today. As promised, we are joined by the


Australian High Commissioner. He has fought his way through the London


traffic. Welcome. Overnight in Australia we have been hearing about


anti-terror raids, extensive anti-terror raids in Sydney and


Brisbane. Can you bring us up-to-speed? Well, about 600 police


mounted some raids in a variety of suburbs, mainly in Sydney but also


Brisbane and detained around 15 people and arrested - and had one


person charged. This is tied up with concerns that the police have had


that there could be a terrorist operation, or a criminal operation


in Australia which could include beheading. And there had been some


links. Attempts to behead in Australia? In Australia, yes. So,


potentially a random attack - as no not identifying a specific person,


but randomly choosing somebody or several people and killing them, and


possibly killing them by beheading them. Do we think this is linked to


the events in Iraq/Syria, where we know with some British Muslims there


are some American Muslims in there, too. We think we have about 60


fighters as part of Isil in Syria and Iraq. And we think there are


links with Isil, yes. Now Prime Minister Abbott has committed 600


Australian troops, eight fighter jets to help combat ISIS in the


region. Exactly what would their role be, can you tell us? It remains


to be seen, because at this stage, the Americans haven't made anip


final decisions on what they are going to do -- made any decisions on


what they are going to do. We are not looking on boots on the ground


to use the phrase. What would the troops be, if not boots on the


ground? Some people would be there to provide support to the Air Force.


To the Australian Air Force? Yes, to people like that. But Mr Abbott has


said they may be called on "to disrupt and degrade." This is going


to depend on how the Americans ultimately define the mission and we


will have to be satisfied with the way they ha defined the mission. We


went to get -- they have defined the mission. We want to get the assets


ready in case there is a call for action on us. And we are making the


call to America and other allies that we are prepared to shoulder the


burden ourselves not leaving everything to the British and


Americans. Is Australia a reliable ally? To America? We are reliable.


You are close and getting closer. You have bought striker jets from


America. I don't think we are buying as many as the UK, but if that's the


definition of a close ally, is it? # Britain and Australia are both very


close and reliable allies of the United States. The reason for that


is that we have a common view, and common values and often common


perspectives about what needs to be done. So we are different countries,


we are Sovereign in our own rights but often come to the same


conclusions. To be fair, all three of our countries know that Isil


should not, over time, be allowed to control substantial slice of


territory in the Middle East. That the Iraqi security forces, the


Peshmerga have to be supported in rolling back Isil.


Britain is going to follow in its footsteps? This is a great move and


a necessary move from Australia, you have to put Australia's own


interests, and Alexander would agree. Australia lives in a


difficult region with a resurgent China, it is important for Australia


that the US engages in the Pacific region and offers security, an


alternative to China. The Americans have a new naval base just outside


Darwin. We are not allowed to call it a naval base. If it looks like


one it probably is. They are going to rotate troops. Marines. Last time


I looked they were in the U.S. Navy. They are not being based there.


There could be another one in Western Australia as well, the


Americans are looking at... We haven't been looking at so much new


American bases, but the Americans being able to deploy through


Australia. Does Australian public opinion back what the Prime Minister


has announced? I think it does, the Liberal party, Tony Abbott's party,


and the Labour Party, the main opposition, support what the


government is doing. The Green party does not but other than that, I


think the mainstream public opinion supports it. We don't often get the


High Commissioner on our programme, we don't want you to go. It is


Joe's turnout. Now since we have the Australian


High Commissioner here we thought we'd ask him why the Australian


Prime Minister's gone walkabout. Tony Abbott this week decided to run


his government from the outback. CHEERING


In a remote pocket of the Northern Territory, at the mythological


birthplace of the didgeridoo Tony Abbott sets to work. He's the seat


of power to an half thousand miles from Parliament house Canberra to a


Portakabin. -- two and a half thousand miles. Life under canvas is


not cramping his leadership style. From his outback office he has


deployed 600 Australian troops to the conflict in Iraq. The Prime


Minister is making good on a promise to spend one week every year in a


disadvantaged indigenous community. Living alongside these people he's


taking part in schemes to tackle high rates of infant mortality, drug


abuse, alcoholism and unemployment. Critics doubt that this makes little


difference to his attitudes, but the Prime Minister can chalk up one win,


school attendance was at a record high when he went to class.


And the High Commissioner is still here, and we're joined also


by the comedian, Mark Little, some viewers may remember him


Welcome to the Daily Politics. That is what I remember, that is what I


spent my university youth doing. It explains your degree. It was a


social phenomenon. My degree in media studies.


To the importance of this trip, why? Indigenous Australians are an


important component of our country, it makes sense that Tony Abbott, as


he did as opposition leader and health Minister, and as Prime


Minister to meet with these communities and understand these


communities, albeit a brief period of time, spending time with these


communities and it is much appreciated. Appreciated by the


community but it is unusual. In the modern Eire prime ministers have to


get out among the diversity of their communities -- in odd and


indigenous people at the first people. They've not had the respect


they deserved over the last couple of centuries. Tony Abbott wants to


have recognition of the indigenous people written into the


constitution. It is going to be hard to get an agreement on the words but


we have to get bipartisan agreement on it. Your impressions, the theory


is, the Prime Minister is in the outback and it is a change of scene.


You can almost see his PR team behind this, he has been one to put


in his foot in it a lot over the past, he's clever at doing that,


Tony Abbott. Recently he made a statement about the defining moment


in Australian history which was the British coming and taking over and


bringing civilisation to Australia. It was defining, whether it is


positive or negative. How is that putting your foot in it? How did he


put his foot in it? He said it was not settled, he said it was settled


a little bit, because what is coming up in the referendum, the


constitutional referendum, the indigenous people want more land


rights, and treaty. Something you would back? I would totally back and


it is hard-core in indigenous politics. What the wording will be


in this, is trying to make it not, to not give the aboriginal treaty so


they don't have any access, SA over their land. We will come back to the


land rights because that's been a long-standing issue. Your point, it


is a PR stunt. Do you admire him for doing it, it is not easy to do,


physically, he is quite a he-man. It is like that it Putin, wrestling a


bear, he's just going camping, as far as the Aussies are concerned,


he's going camping! Have you done it? You have more nasty animals out


there than the rest of the world put together. He has waved goodbye to


soldiers that he has sent to the war in Iraq. It shows you politics is


getting tougher and tougher no matter what you do. People say it is


stunned, if you do the right thing, it is just a stunt you make a gaffe.


To be honest with you, anybody who knows Tony Abbott, I'm not talking


about observers and commentators, I know him very well. Anybody who


knows him knows throughout his political career and prior to that


he's been very committed to indigenous issues. He means it, when


he goes out there to do this, that it's not to take your point... By


the way personally I do not think it'll have any effect on the voters.


But I do think it demonstrates... He has to minute, if he is going to


keep on selling off Australia to the Chinese, he is going to have access


to this important treaty. The aboriginal population appreciated,


for them at least it's quite a thing to have the Prime Minister stay


there for one week. It is, he's taken away the aboriginal


commission, he has set himself up as the indigenous Prime Minister, he


will look after it himself personally. Also women, use in


charge of that as well. I don't know, there's something not quite


right upstairs as far as I'm concerned. The Prime Minister of a


country, he flip-flops around. Saying things like, he's not quite


right upstairs, people can draw their own conclusion. How would you


take that comment? I would leave that to the viewers. I would make


this point, here is a man who was a Rhodes scholar, a deeply intelligent


and thoughtful person. Who amongst other things wants to do something


about indigenous disadvantage. By the way, it is a bit patronising to


think that all indigenous people have one view, there are whole


variety of political views among indigenous people and on this issue


of the recognition in the constitution there are a variety of


perspectives. Could you imagine another Australian politician doing


this? I suppose I could, I am not saying that another politician would


not do it, certainly, the fact Tony Abbott has done it means his


successors will think we should do this as well. What about British


politicians, not that we have the equivalent of the outback. The


closest we have got is one day cabinet meetings away from London.


Manchester, Liverpool! Just to square the circle, this man is quite


hard right wing in his ideological views, but he's clearly a very


compassionate man who believes involuntary is. When those fires in


Australia, when he became Prime Minister they could not find him


because he was doing his traditional Fire Fighting. -- he believes in the


culture of volunteering. It is not unusual to have conservative


politicians who combine this with a lot of personal compassion. I


suspect he's one of those. He likes to get hands-on, because he's got


some big issues, he needs to do his best. Thank you for joining us. .


Now, what's it like being a member of an all-male,


But if you want to know, and get the chance, ask David Cameron,


Failing that, you could watch a new film, that's out tomorrow,


The riot club. In a few years these boys will be very important. Or


should I say the Bollington club. It started as wanting to write a piece


about young wealthy people. I was first researching it for the theatre


play in 2007, that is when the stories about the Bollington club


were starting to surface. This is an opportunity to reconsider the type


of person... The best and the brightest. And exclusive dining club


at Oxford University, the club, which still exist today, was made


famous because some Obama 's powerful politicians are former


members. This movie is this woman's take on what the rich and most


privileged elite could getting up to. Westminster, Eaton, Harrow, if


you have to do. The film centres on one night of debauchery at a country


pub where we see the young members of the club getting trashed and


destroy everything in sight. Your play, Posh, was a huge hit going up


to the 2010 election and now we are getting into the real campaign for


the 2015 general election. What do you think, probably the two most


powerful men in government, David Cameron the primary step, the


Chancellor George Osborne, will make of this film considering they were


in this club? They might take issue with what the film suggests. I hope


they would enjoy the humour of it. Hopefully they would find it an


entertaining ride although they would probably be required to come


out afterwards and say it was dreadful. We have a portrait of...


You cannot go through there. Laura Wade insists the work is not about


today's politicians. We're not just offering you a club, I am offering


you the future. It is the time. But questions of class and


accountability and the issue of the privileged backgrounds of top Tory


MPs are all put under the spotlight. It's a problem that has been


discussed any number of times, that they are not necessarily


representative of the rest of society and people who have been


through a public school upbringing and straight into Oxford and


Westminster, how much do they really understand? If they don't have that


knowledge, what efforts are they making to get it? And obviously the


film is dealing with a very small number of characters. It is not at


all attempting to say all public school boys are like that, that


everybody at Oxford is like that. It asks the question. It's time for you


to leave. CHUCKLES And the Conservative MP, David Amess


joins us now from College Green. Welcome to the Daily Politics. Do


you think films like this will stoke this image of arrogant posh boys,


the image that your fellow MP Nadine Dorey 's referred to as David


Cameron and George Osborne? Macro no, I don't think it will have any


effect at all. Most people have never heard of this club. Perhaps


less about the club, and more about the image, the posh image of certain


sections of politicians who do not really represent the public at


large, is that not an issue for the Conservatives?


The reason I initiated this trawl of colleagues with working class


backgrounds is I got fed up with people suggesting we are all posh


and come from wealthy backgrounds. If you ask me where the real wealth


and poshness comes from is now on the Labour and liberal benches. I


have identified up to 50 of my colleagues who have working class


backgrounds and roots. Many have remarkable stories. I think their


experiences add a great deal to the national debate in Westminster.


Right, but is the reason that they don't come to the fore and they are


not highlighted is because the backgrounds of a lot of senior


figures and I take your point in the Labour Party, too, but within the


Conservative Party, half of Conservative MPs went to private


schools, many of the Cabinet went to Oxford and Cambridge and many are


very wealthy. That obviously reinforces that image? Well, you


see, this is a complete misnomer. Is it? One in six of my colleagues have


a working class background. Look at Patrick McLaughlin's background and


Sajit's background. He arrived in the with a pound. When they read


this, others have had a bath in a tin bath. Half of these colleagues


seemed to be hosed down in the street. They have remarkable


backgrounds and have gone on to hold high office. Right but look at...


Their backgrounds are being misrepresented. Their backgrounds


may not have been misrepresented but are they overwhelmed by the


backgrounds of David Cameron, of Boris Johnson, of George Osborne and


other old etonians? I'm just putting it to you. Rightly or wrongly, that


there are many of the advisors, even at number ten who are also from a


similar elite clique and this is the top of the party? Well, the issue of


advisors, I haven't got enormous knowledge of but in my lifetime.


Winston Churchill, very posh background, but then you go on to


Margaret Thatcher and to John Major, working class background. I don't


think it much matters. No, but has it reverted to privately-educated


old eye tonians, even if -- etonians, even if the numbers aren't


there but do they have disproportionate influence in terms


of the image of the party? I think they are given too much publicity.


The public are not concerned with the background of the politicians,


it is whether or not they govern effective. I don't have a hang-up


because I have a working class background and I shouldn't think


that David Cameron has a backhang-up because he has a come if for tab


background. It is whether or not who is chosen to govern


background. It is whether or not who sense to experience well. I think


that's what the Conservative Party has. Are you worried about the


timing of this film? There are obviously some of your colleagues


who are worried about t in the run-up to the 2015 election. A


fellow Conservative MP, says this looks like revenge for George


Osborne cutting film test value subsidies? I'm in the worried. It'll


probably just be like the Chelsea reality proximity not accurate, fan


it is acy. I don't think it'll do any damage whatsoever. If anyone


wants to make a film about working class Conservatives, I'll love a


part. We'll give them your number if we get any calls. Mark Malloch


Brown, you were educated at Marlborough College and Cambridge.


Is the MP of Conservative MPs disproportionate in your mind? It


wasn't around the Cabinet table I served on. There were a couple of us


who had public school backgrounds. To me, this whole issue is tragic.


There is no other country in the world where you could make a movie


like this which would resonate. Will it resonate? I think it will. You


have to look at the debates in Scotland during the referendum, this


ideal of an elite ruling them from London. What about Harvard, they


have not made a move have I about t but the club that George Bush was


part of in Harvard often features. Yale There are lots of private clubs


but they are not in a sense represented an elite out of touch


group in the way that is suggested here. In fact those Yale Secret


Societies have pretty much lost their footing nowadays, I


understand. It is unfortunate because I'm perfectly willing to


accept and believe that David Cameron is governing not because of


his education but in he sees, as the best interests of the country but


this is cutting away at his legitimacy and authority and


frankly, sclas a big drag on this country. Whatever -- class is a dig


drag. Whatever your view. I think it is olding back our GDP a percentagep


point a year. We are so preoccupied with this history. It is really


disappointing. Well obviously the last thing you want is for your


colleagues to be out of touch with voters? From 1997 to 2010 we had a


Labour Prime Minister with a really posh background and another Labour


Prime Minister with a comfortable background but as far as I'm


concerned, this film will have no impact at all with the general


public. Thank you very much. I can't believe that he said that


Made in Chelsea wasn't accurate. I thought it was a documentary.


You have the box set. I have.


Yes, I know, you're watching me on the Sunday Politics.


But what other worthwhile things could you be doing?


Westminster and Whitehall are liberally dotted with some


magnificent buildings, some of which like to make themselves known


but you don't often get inside them, which is kind of the purpose


Lots of the properties will be open to the public.


Some of the more important ones you have to book.


But I'll give you a quick tour of five of them that are a stone's


When it comes to Westminster Hall it's the roof you are really coming


to see, the largest medieval hammer beam roof in Europe.


The hall itself has been the scene of some major dramas in our history.


They condemned a king to die here, but even though I'm showing you


the inside, still come along because actually the surprise is how


From the ancient to the modern, Portcullis House is only 13 years'


It is where many MPs have their offices and often meet the public


It has some infamously expensive trees to look after and


since you paid for the whole thing as tax payers, you


The whole point of Open House London,


is it gets you inside buildings you are not normally able to see.


Getting the front door of Downing Street is hard work normally


but they are opening it up, the state rooms are available.


But here is the thing - it's been the seat of Government


They are security conscious and the fact is that anyone who is


lucky enough to be in the ballot to get inside here, will actually have


to be security checked, a background check will take place.


So, right in the heart of Whitehall, two huge purpose-built Government


office buildings in the Victorian period.


Magnificent on the outside but also on the inside.


The Treasury, the famous drum, you can get access to that this weekend,


which you often see when the Chancellor is leaving the Treasury


for the Commons on Budget day and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office


are opening up the India office and the Durbar Court


which is magnificent but the real prize in here is the staircase.


So, there you are, if you are interested in history and


politics, that's an architectural smog he is boring for you.


And the Director of Open City, Victoria Thornton is with me now.


How did this come about? Well I started it in my back room. I'm not


an architect. Have you allowed the public in to see your back room? I


don't think they want to. Was there resistance? A lot. It was 22 years


ago. Gosh. I know, kind of of like been continuity girl but with the


Department of Heritage, there wasn't a Department of Culture, we were in


a heavy recession, 55% of architects were unemployed, so there was not a


real feeling of particularly contemporary architecture. It was


very much about the past. I thought actually architecture is about the


quality, not the age. So you have the Foreign Office, the Treasury,


Portcullis House, opposite Big Ben The Bank of England. The Bank of


England as well, and number ten. Anything else? 26 Whitehall, as


well, part of the Cabinet Office as well. And well HM Treasury. So you


have at Foreign Office HM Treasury you can slip from one or the other.


It is great. You can walk up and down Whitehall for 48 hours and look


at some fantastic architecture. Do has to be a good thing. Great thing.


My vote is go and look at the Foreign Office. The Treasury - in


order to efficiently govern us and know how to cut our spending has


rather remodelled itself and the modern architecture inside that


wonderful old building, where the dear old Foreign Office, it is still


the original - I don't know how you run foreign affairs from t but it is


a beautiful architectural thing. I loved being a minister there. I


guess you didn't try for MI5 or MI6? We do. What do they say? Not this


year. Come back next year. It is always refurbishment, in September.


And what do people have to do, I'm sure they can't just turn up? Most


is. The whole point is that it is free access for all. It is about not


getting ahead. It is free and that's the whole point of the ethos of it.


It isn't exclusive. It is totally inclusive. Thinking about your


earlier point. What about the security checks? Security generally


are good. Obviously there are some security checks. Downing Street is a


ballot. Yes, and we do a few ballots that. Did have 25,000 people in the


ballot. Really? Yes, so there is a real interest in architecture.


Queues? There are, but you accept t you know. It's like if you want to


get in, otherwise go and have a cup of tea on those days but we have


buildings like the Bank of England, which has about a two-hour queue but


we have the gherkin and we also have the new Leden Hall building, which


is the key one this year Do you get to see the gold in the Bank of


England? No, I don't think so. I wouldn't mind some of it! But they


are not all the big sort of state properties r they, that you can go


and see? It is a whole range. It is how you live, work and play, we call


t it is about opening eyes minds and doors. -- we call it. It to get you


interested in architecture N your education system, did any of you


learn about architecture? Most probably not. It is an education


weekend but fun. --. What about Admiralty House? It has in the past.


Our hidden gem is Dover House. It is in. It is a pre-booking, which is,


of course for Scotland. It used to be the seat of the Scottish Office


and I think is now Scotland House. We will see what happens tomorrow


about that. I think it is a great idea. Congratulations. Pleasure. Now


there is time before we go to find out the answer to our quiz. I have


forgotten all about it. The question was: Which job did former Labour


minister, Alan Johnson suggest Ed Miliband should have done before


entering politics? Was it, a posman, TV presenter, stand-up comedian or


soldier. I soldier. I must say I rather agree. It would knock a few


of those metropolitan spots off him. Do you think so? I would love to


know what his reaction would be. I can't quite see him as a soldier.


What do you think? That's the point. None of us could. It would have


helped him survive the crowds in Edinburgh.


Anyway, well done, you have the right answer. Thank you for being


with us today, Mark. That's all for today. Thank you to all of our


guests. The One O'Clock News is starting over on BBC One now. I will


be back on BBC One tonight, from 10.40 onwards and all through the


night until 9.00am tomorrow morning. Getting Westminster reaction to the


results of the Scottish referendum as they come in, on our programme


Scotland Decides, with hue Edwards in Glasgow. If I'm still awake, I


will be back with the Daily Politics here on BBC Two at noon tomorrow


and, oh, yes, Newsnight tomorrow night as well. You are joking. It is


a quiet 24 hours. Goodbye.


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