27/01/2016 Daily Politics


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Morning, folks, welcome to the Daily Politics.


The Government's under fire about it's tax deal with Google.


The US search engine giant has agreed to pay ?130 million in back


tax and interest, which sounds a lot but perhaps isn't when you consider


Google books several billion in British revenues every year.


Italy Could be about to strike a much tougher deal even


though Google Italy is much smaller


You won't need a search engine to find out who'll be starring


Call me Dave and Jezza face each other across the despatch


Campaigners want to lower the age you can vote to 16.


We'll be talking to one political expert who thinks it should be


Why should JoCo be deprived of the vote?


And have you booked your summer holiday yet?


If not, how about a Brexit to Brussels?


Believe it or not there's a new holiday rage for


That is the kind of thing we would go on. We would be the first ones


there. And the only ones. All that in the next hour


and with us for the whole of the duration is the Arts


Minister, Ed Vaizey. We have to be nice to him,


because otherwise he'll be He is in fact the longest


serving Arts Minister ever. And with us also, the Shadow Women's


and Equalities Minister, We have to be nice to be her


because otherwise it Kate's one of three Shadow Women


and Equalities Ministers Now, since we have a Culture


Minister with us lets talk licence fee and the over 75s,


because the BBC is exploring plans to persuade pensioners who currently


don't pay the licence fee Is that a good idea? It is up to the


BBC who are now responsible for the free TV licence. I got an e-mail


from a constituent who said they would willingly pay the licence fee.


I have had conversations with other pensioners who said they would not.


It is within the BBC's right now it is responsible to ask people if they


want to make a voluntary contribution. And you would be


comfortable with that? There is a campaign fronted by celebrities who


want to persuade those over the age of 75 to pay. We reached an


agreement with the BBC that they would take on the free television


licence and if they want to ask people to make a contribution, that


is fine. Are you worried about complaints from pensioners who feel


they might be under pressure? No, that did not occur to me. I get a


lot of e-mails about the BBC, people care passionately about the BBC and


they want to have a say in it. We have had the second largest


consultation on the BBC and this will be part of that debate. They


care about it and many of them will be unhappy about the decision which


is palming off welfare decision for the government and giving it to the


BBC. It is right the BBC has wholesale responsibility for its


financing and part of that is free TV licences for pensioners. Why


didn't the government make that decision? We said the BBC was to


take it on and they would be free to remove it or free to engage with


people over the age of 75 and ask them to make a contribution. But it


is the government that is accountable to voters. It is


accountable to Parliament and it is also accountable to people through


the payment of the licence fee. People have to pay it and the BBC


has a direct relationship with the licence fee payer. Andrew quipped


that somehow I have some say over his future, but the BBC should be


independent of government and one of the ways that goes is by the


financing through the licence fee rather than through general


taxation. Which services do you think the BBC should cut to fund


this? Minister should not tell the BBC what services to cut. But this


decision has been foisted on the BBC. It should decide which ones it


wants to maintain and which ones are the most effective. It moved BBC


Three online and the justification for that was that more and more


people are going online to view. Let's get ahead of the curve and


have a well-established brand we moved online which is aimed at


younger viewers and learn lessons about engaging with people online.


Did you support that initial decision and agreement as Ed Vaizey


calls it between the BBC and the government for the BBC to fund the


over 75 is? It is important to recognise the BBC is a public


service broadcaster and we have to make sure it is on a sustainable,


financial footing and that is a government responsibility. We all


rely on the BBC is independent, impartial and informative. As far as


this initiative for the over 75s is concerned, it might be quite


bureaucratic to implement and the gains might be marginal, but this is


my concern about the transferring of the funding onto the BBC and they


have to find money somewhere, if this starts to exclude marginalise


pensioners. Many of them find the television a lifeline, they cannot


get out of the House, they need the BBC and we need to be careful about


the impact of these changes. A campaign by celebrities to persuade


pensioners, do you think that would be seen by somebody is bullying? I


hope it would not be seen as bullying and I hope nobody would be


offended when I say that some pensioners could be confused, they


might not get the message clearly, they might not understand it is


voluntary, they do not have to make a contribution. I am concerned and I


understand why the BBC are looking at every single possibility to raise


money, but this could impact on vulnerable people.


What about other pensioner benefits? In the run-up to the election Labour


said they would be reviewing pension benefits that were given right


across the board. Should it be looked at again? If I am on this, we


were not very great about pensioner lifestyles, we were miserable


leading up to the election. People in their 60s and 70s are living a


very different life. Should they still get those benefits? It is


important we should review the way benefits are structured for older


people, how we should support people who carry on working in their 60s


and 70s, to gain from their employment, and to make sure they


get income for retirement. We have to make sure that those who are


finding it most difficult to save for retirement are properly


protected. I am in favour of a full review. We are four and half years


away from an election, let's use that time to get it right.


Now, it's coming up to the end of January and the spectre


of the looming tax return is weighing heavily upon many of us.


Working out tax is such a tiresome affair.


It's happy days, however, for Google, who have come to a deal


with Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs to pay ?130 million


Let's talk to our political correspondent Vicky Young


The Chancellor began by hailing this deal is a major success, but now it


looks like they are on the back foot. If Jeremy Corbyn tries to


tackle the Prime Minister on this he will be desperate to get David


Cameron to repeat that phrase, is it a major success? Do they believe it


is? Labour are trying to pin this on ministers. They are saying there


should be no such thing as mates' rates for big companies. Labour are


asking all sorts of questions about what meetings the government and


Google had. The bottom line is we do not know much about the deal. It is


HMRC that deals with all of this and it is by its nature very secret, so


it is hard to establish what rate they might be paying and how they


came to this deal. The politicians might shout about it on both sides


of the House, but isn't it the case that this is a done deal? HMRC has


done a deal with Google and they have signed a clause and it cannot


be changed unless they find that Google has broken the law. 130


million, job done. That is right, and we heard from Boris Johnson who


said that although it is not much money, they have done nothing wrong


and it is the law that needs to change. George Osborne will say he


has brought in a new tax on diverted profits and is trying to tackle all


of this. What would look bad would be if Italy and France got more


money out of Google, that with then make the HMRC here look pretty bad.


But it is the corporation tax, the system that the UK has and the


Treasury Select Committee has said it will look into all of that and


the chairman is saying the UK tax laws are to old. The Chancellor said


it was a success, and Boris Johnson said it was derisory. Who is right?


HMRC conducted a tax audit with Google dating back to 2005. What is


right is the Chancellor has introduced the diverted profits tax


which means going forward Google will pay tax on profits are


generated in the UK in a proper way. The diverted profits tax is


something other countries have started to copy. The point about


France and Italy is well made in that there is not a developed


country that is not wrestling with these digital companies that have a


global presence. The UK has taken the lead in the OECD saying we have


to sort this out. But is not right that under this deal, up until now,


Google will not pay the diverted profits tax? It has just come in.


The future? So any profits that have been diverted are not covered by


this deal? Going forward it will pay it and under this audit by HMRC we


have seen ten years back tax being paid. Is it all back tax or is it


interest? Are there penalties? This is a confidential agreement in the


sense that companies reach agreement with HMRC about the right level of


tax they should pay and they reach it on the basis of commercial


reasons. If it included penalties, the amount of tax would go up


hugely? You can argue the granular point. But HMRC has gone through a


very... I am arguing it. Everyone will have a view on what Google


should pay fairly. What I should say is the process is right. It should


not be for ministers to say what a company should pay. It is HMRC


conducting an audit, going through the books and reaching an agreement.


When you reach an agreement, there may be issues to do with interest


and penalties and there will be calculations about if this came to


court and the expense and time involved. All sorts of issues. I


understand that. Would it be a major success if it turns out that France


and Italy, where Google is much smaller, a quarter of what it is


here, ended up getting a lot more money out of them? I will not


speculate on what France and Italy will get. People are talking as if


the Italians have secured a fantastic settlement. No, they have


not, but they are quite far down the road. We have an agreement with


Google to pay taxes, we have a diverted profits tax that people are


copying and we have taken the lead in international forums saying we


need changes in the international tax laws to cope with companies who


are able to move quite freely around the globe. In 2014, Google's


revenues out of the UK were almost ?5 billion. This is separate from


the deal. It paid 30 million in corporation tax. 5 billion in


revenues, 30 million in corporation tax. Is that a success? Those of you


watching the news will have seen HMRC explaining some of the


calculations made effectively to criticise the settlement and not


based on an accurate understanding of tax laws. The National tax law is


even more complicated. I am confident HMRC went through a very


thorough investigation. It is an independent process. I am not sure


that it is fair that a company makes revenues of almost 5 billion in


Britain pays only 30 million in tax. We want companies to pay their fair


share of tax. The Chancellor was criticised in some international


forums where they said he was messing with international tax


treaties, but he went ahead with it because he thinks it is the right


thing to do and that is being copied by other countries around the world.


Google will pay its fair share of tax going forward and we are in the


lead in international forums. Out of 5 billion, the Exchequer got


30 million. Is that fair? Google's European tax -- headquarters are in


Ireland with a low level of corporation tax. In Australia,


Google's Asian headquarters is in Singapore. We are getting into lots


of detail. I am not privy to it all. But we know that Google... Let me


ask you. Has this agreement with HM RC, as it established that Google


now has a permanent establishment in Britain? That is a very technical


point. That was presumably part of the debate about whether Google is


paying its fair share of tax. Does it doesn't it... You can ask the HM


RC on what basis... You visited the headquarters. We have a picture.


This is the new headquarters, because their existing one isn't big


enough. This is the proposed headquarters in King's 5000 people.


The one they have at the moment is split between two sites. -- proposed


headquarters in King's Cross. Is it not incredible but anybody planning


to build a bigger headquarters cannot for tax purposes have a


permanent establishment? I went to visit what is known as the Google


campus because I was supporting an organisation which supports... Did


it look permanent? Was it a pop-up headquarters? An organisation called


creative England which does a lot of work supporting our fantastically


successful creative industries around the UK. You are asking me a


technical point. It doesn't look that technical. It looks like a


massive headquarters. HM RC have conducted an extensive audit. There


is a new tax regime, which was controversial with some companies


and in some international forums, but the Chancellor went ahead


because he recognises that the company -- public want to see


companies like this paying their tax. The fact is that, since 2005,


Google has been following the principles of how you measure


taxable profits that it agreed with the last Labour government. So, if


Google isn't paying enough tax, it is as much Labour's fault. As I


understand, the first questions were asked in 2000 and Margaret Hodge,


the Labour chair of the Public Accounts Committee in the last


Parliament, really took up the mantle. She isn't in government. The


principles that Google followed in paying tax worth agreed by the last


Labour government. You made the wrong agreement. A lot of time has


passed since 2009 and, while I welcome steps to toughen up and


agreed internationally a more robust tax regime, we have to recognise


that circumstances and learning and understanding of Google's


operations, it was quite a new company in 2000. Did you make a


mistake? I have no idea whether that tax regime was appropriate at the


time. I think we can all agree it is not appropriate now. It was a tax


regime agreed by the last Labour government which allowed Facebook, a


multi-billion dollar corporation, to pay corporation tax of ?4000 in


2011. It is derisory. Nobody could defend that. What is really


important, having obviously set up the tax regime that haven't


understood at the time the way in which some of these international


online, really without much in the way of material, I think perhaps


none of us, accountants, tax people, the Treasury, governments, perhaps


didn't understand, and perhaps the companies themselves didn't fully,


how they would knit to the tax regimes. What I think is important


now is that there is credibility in the tax system. As a taxpayer, my


constituents feel that this is really pretty insulting. We pay our


taxes. Our small businesses pay taxes. Ballet companies pay taxes.


They look at this and they think it is a deal for the rich. -- family


companies. What would you do differently? We need to be sharper


about getting the right deals. HM RC uses its top experts... Perhaps it


needs to invest more in its expertise. We have lost substantial


numbers of experts in HMS seed and we don't have any transparency. --


HM RC. The government is hotly defending the privacy of Google's


tax affairs, but it has to be balanced with public belief. You


allowed a double Irish and a Dutch sandwich. Can you still do that? I


think we got rid of the double Irish. I don't know if we have the


Dutch sandwich. I was taught the other day that the human brain can


accommodate 4.7 billion books but I can't accommodate whether we have


the double Dutch sandwich. I think we have raised hundreds billion


pounds in tax, backdated tax, thanks to the experts in HMRC.


The so-called bedroom tax has been declared discriminatory by Court


of Appeal judges, following a legal challenge by a domestic violence


victim and the family of a disabled teenager.


They had argued that the spare room subsidy,


which reduces housing benefit for social housing tenants


with a "spare" bedroom, is discriminatory.


The Government says it's to appeal against the decision.


Do you back the government decision to appeal this? As a member of the


government, I obviously backed the government decision. I haven't seen


the judgment so I don't know on what basis it was made and how it was


found to be discriminatory, but clearly Iain Duncan Smith and his


team and the government as a whole doesn't agree with this judgment. It


is within its rights to appeal. Why? We are talking about two but


vulnerable -- two small but vulnerable groups, disabled children


who need an overnight room to state and victims of domestic violence who


need a safe sanctuary. We are talking about thousands in the


former, 300 in the latter. Could they not be an exception? There are


a range of exceptions... But not for these people. There are exceptions


for vulnerable children... There is not an exemption for disabled


children who need an overnight carer. You are saying it is still


fair to make them pay. I haven't seen the details of the judgment and


I don't know on what basis this was taken to court or on what basis the


Court of Appeal made its judgment. I am used to reading judgments in


areas I am responsible for the. There may be issues in the judgment


to do with process, in terms of how it was introduced, which the


government may have to look at. The government has made a firm statement


early on that it doesn't agree with this judgment and it wants to appeal


and it clearly thinks it has grounds. How do you think it looks


to the public when the government said it wants to protect the most


vulnerable and people would judge that these two groups are among the


most vulnerable, and yet they cannot be exempted from this paying off a


spare room subsidy or a bedroom tax, whatever you want to pay it, because


the government thinks it has to fit in to its broad range of welfare


plans? What the government is doing, which I think has overwhelming


support, is to reform welfare. That is in terms of capping the amount of


benefits which people get, and I think there was support for the


spare room subsidy... But these groups... There something like


400,000 homes which under occupied. We want to have a system, and people


have looked at under occupancy for many years, we ought a system which


encourages people who are under occupied their house to look for


other accommodation. I can't comment on the specific details of the case.


I haven't seen the judgment. I assume the government are appealing


because they think they are right to appeal.


Now, the Justice Secretary, Michael Gove, told the House


of Commons yesterday that, contrary to reports,


he has not become, quote, "a sandal-wearing,


I'm glad he felt the need to clear that up.


He was responding to a question from Conservative backbencher


Phillip Davies, a man who, I think it is fair to say,


is not known for wearing sandals nor munching muesli.


But, here at the Daily Politics, it got us thinking.


We don't care if you've swapped your shiny brogues for


Or if you've ditched the full English for a healthier alternative.


Or, indeed, if you've swapped your fully caffeinated


We believe that it's not what you drink, it's


Yes, what better way to sip your organic dandelion tea


But whether you're vegan or not you'll have to enter our Guess


the Year competition to get your hands on one.


We'll remind you how to enter in just a minute but,


first, do you know when this happened?


So far, 11 MPs, both Labour and Tory, have stood down or been


forced out because of the expenses saga.


# Is falling down on all that I've ever known...#


# I don't know what's right and what's real anymore


# And I don't know how I'm meant to feel any more...#


# When there's no one left to fight


# Boys like him don't shine so bright


# He's out on the town tryin' to find trouble...#


Indigenous British, the people who have been here...


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


send your answer to our special quiz email address, [email protected]


Entries must arrive by 12:30 today and you can see the full terms


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Just take a look at Big Ben, and that can


Yes, Prime Minister's Questions is on its way.


What is likely to dominate the front bench exchanges? I think there is a


nice big parcel of a gift which George Osborne tied up with a big


fat ribbon at the end of Davos, especially for John McDonnell and


Jeremy Corbyn today, this deal with Google, which he tried to claim as a


victory. It was an HM RC deal. By George Osborne claiming a victory,


he put himself in the story and then, over the coming days, as


politicians in all parties and the public looked more closely at the


scale of the deal, ?5 billion in revenues and ?130 million in back


taxes, there is a question about the smell tax and I think it is


inevitable Labour will raise it. They think they are onto something


and they will push it and push it began as a campaign. I understand


later that a letter will go to the government calling on the National


Audit Office to investigate. Europe is increasingly moving up the


agenda. What do you hear on the latest that the government hoped for


the timetable to get it in by the end of June but might not? The 23rd


of June is the date to pencil into your diaries for people who are sad


enough! It would be wise to have an eraser ready to take it out. The


stumbling block, as we have known for some time in these negotiations,


is the question of getting an agreement which looks anything like


the Prime Minister's promised to ban benefits for EU workers in the UK


for four years. In the other parts of the renegotiation, there is a way


through, no final agreements. Officials this week are frantically


going backwards and forwards between Brussels and London trying to find a


way through on welfare. If that can be done, and there is a belief in


government that it can indeed be done, because nobody wants to talk


about this around the EU for any longer than necessary. They have


bigger fish to fry. There is no guarantee will that, if you keep


going on and on, that you end up with a bit agreement. The government


is hopeful, it is possible, but they have been very careful in the last


seven days to row back from what is the beginning of the year was


probably public overconfidence, things like the Chancellor saying it


was falling into place. They will still need to get it through


Parliament. If Labour was to vote against it in June, and the Scottish


Nationalists don't want the end of June, and the number of Eurosceptics


peeled off, because they believe that the longer they wait for the


referendum the better their chance of winning, they might not get it


through for June. This sounds like all of us obsessing about ridiculous


process but it matters enormously. There is a lot of chatter about this


in the corridors of the House of Commons. If Labour could be


persuaded or see it in their interests to give the government


maximum embarrassment on this, to go alongside the Scottish Nationalists,


and there is concern in Northern Ireland and Wales also about this


timetable, because of the elections, if they could be persuaded it would


be fun and larks to embarrass the government on the timetable, they


could do it. Will Labour vote for the end of June as a referendum


date? The longer we are in an uncertain situation, the worst that


is for the UK economy, so I don't think it is about fun and games. I


think it is about what is in the interests of the country. That is


what we will have to discuss. I want to see what the deal is. But you


would have a preference for sooner? I think a protracted campaign is bad


for the UK and the business. That is the view among the majority of the


PLP. I think Alan Johnson would be very unhappy about the delay. There


are people nibbling around the edges of this. We have got the ballot


paper. This is what we will get to vote, whatever the date is. I have


got one for Ed Vaizey. Fill it in. But the deal hasn't come back! This


is like a secret ballot, dear Ron The Daily Politics. We won't tell a


soul. -- here on The Daily Politics. What have you voted? You are not


going to wait for the deal to come back. You have both voted to remain.


That is because my unswerving confidence in the Prime Minister and


the fantastic deal he will bring back. David Cameron always wanted to


maintain public opinion but there was a chance he might change his


mind at the last minute. Can we believe that given that, day after


day, he is sending more and more, close to saying... He can't wait to


come out and start campaigning to stay in. He just wants to get on


with it. He will take a very personal, forward, leading role in


the campaign. While the other side is under continued question about


how they would have as their leader, if indeed there is one leader, I


think it is clear that the leader of the end campaign will be the Prime


Minister. This is why there is that, what sounds like process but is


rather important, but this spat about the timing.


Let's see if Europe comes up. It is right our whole country should


stand together to remember the darkest hour of our country. Last


year, I said we would build a national memorial in London to show


the importance Britain places on sharing the memory of the Holocaust.


This will be built in Victoria Tower Gardens and will stand beside


Parliament as a permanent statement of our values and will be somewhere


for children to visit for generations to come. I am grateful


to all those who have made this possible. This morning I had


meetings with ministerial colleagues and others and in addition to my


duties in this house I shall have further such meetings later today. I


echo the Prime Minister's sentiments regarding Holocaust Memorial Day. We


must never forget. The North Sea or an industry on which many people in


my constituency are dependent for their livelihoods is facing very


serious challenges at the current time. The government has taken steps


to address the situation, but more is required if the industry is to


survive and thrive. Will my right honourable friend assuming that he


recognises the seriousness of the situation and he will do all he can


to get the industry through these very difficult times? My honourable


friend is right to raise this, I recognise the seriousness of the


situation. The oil price decline is the longest in 20 years and this


causes difficulties for the North Sea and we can see the effects in


the east of England, in Scotland, particularly Aberdeen. I am


determined we build a bridge to the future for all those involved in the


North Sea. We will help the world-class sector export expertise.


We announced 1.3 billion of support last year and we are implementing a


review and I will be going to Aberdeen tomorrow where we will be


saying more about what we can do to help this vital industry at this


vital time. Jeremy Corbyn. Thank you, Mr Speaker. On behalf of the


opposition, could I welcome the remarks the Prime Minister has just


made about Holocaust Memorial Day. It is the 71st anniversary of the


liberation of Auschwitz and we have to remember the deepest, darkest


days of inhumanity that happened then and genocides that have


happened since and educate another generation to avoid those for all


time in the future. I thank the Prime Minister for what he said.


Independent experts have suggested that Google is paying an effective


tax rate on its UK profits of around 3%. Does the Prime Minister dispute


that figure? Let's be clear what we are talking about. We are talking


about tax that should have been collected under a Labour government,


raised by a collected under a Labour government,


I do dispute the figures he gives. It is quite rightly that this is


done independently by HMRC, but I am absolutely clear that no government


has done more than this one to crack down on tax evasion and aggressive


tax avoidance. No government, and certainly not the last Labour


government. Mr Speaker, my question actually was if the Prime Minister


thinks an effective tax rate of 3% is right or wrong? He did not answer


it. The Chancellor of the Exchequer described this arrangement as a


major success, while the Prime Minister's official spokesperson


only called it a step forward. The Mayor of London described the


payment is quite derisory. What exactly is the government's position


on this 3% rate of taxation? We have put in place a diverted profits tax


which means this company and others will pay more tax in future. More


tax in future than they ever paid under Labour were the tax rate for


Google was 0%. That is what it means. Let me tell him what we have


done. We have changed the tax law so many times that we have raised an


extra 100 billion from business in the last parliament. When I came to


power banks did not pay tax on all their profits, allowed under Labour,


stopped under the Tories. Companies could cut their tax bill, allowed


under Labour, stopped under the Tories. Companies could figure


accounting rules, allowed under Labour and stopped under the Tories.


We have done more on tax evasion and tax avoidance and Labour ever did.


They are running to catch up, but they have not got a leg to stand on.


Mr Speaker, it was under a Labour government that the inquiry began


into Google and in addition as a percentage of GDP corporation tax


receipts are lower under this government than they were under


previous governments. I have got a question here, Mr Speaker, from a


gentleman called Jeff. You might well laugh, but Jeff actually speaks


for millions of people when he says to me... Can you ask the Prime


Minister is as a working man of over 30 years whether there is a scheme


that I can join that pays the same rate of tax as Google and other


large corporations? What does the Prime Minister say to Jeff? What I


say to Jeff is that his taxes are coming down under this government


and Google's taxes are going up under this government. Let me say


something, something he just said was factually inaccurate. He says


corporation tax receipts have gone down, they have gone up by 20% under


this government because we have got a strong economy with businesses


making money, employing people and paying taxes into the exchequer. If


like me he is genuinely angry about what happened to Google under


Labour, maybe he should start by calling Tony Blair. You can get him


and JP Morgan. Call Gordon Brown, you can get him at a Californian


bond dealer. Alistair Darling is at Morgan Stanley. There is other


people to blame for Google not paying their taxes. We are the ones


who got them to pay. The problem is, Mr Speaker, that the Prime Minister


is responsible for government and therefore is responsible for tax


collection. Mr Speaker, Google made profits of ?6 billion in the UK


between 2005 and 2015 and is paying 130 million pounds in tax for the


whole of that decade. Millions of people this week I'm filling in


their tax returns to get them in by the 31st. They have to send the form


back, they do not get the option of 25 meetings with 17 ministers to


decide what their rate of tax is. Many people going to their HMRC


offices or returning them online this week will say this, why is


there one rule for big multinational companies and another for ordinary,


small businesses and self-employed workers? All those people filling in


their tax returns will be paying lower taxes under this government. I


have to say, he can if he wants criticise HMRC, but their work is


investigated by the National Audit Office and when they did that


they've found the settlements they reached with companies are fair.


That is how it works. The Shadow Chancellor is pointing. The idea


that those two right honourable gentleman would stand up to anyone


in this regard is laughable. This week they met with the unions and


they gave them flying pickets. They met with the Argentinians and they


gave them the Falkland islands. They met with a bunch of migrants in


Calais and said they could come to Britain. They never stand up for the


hard-working British people and British taxpayers. Mr Speaker, we


have had no answers on Google, we have had no answers on Jeff, can I


raise with him another unfair tax policy that does it affect many


people in this country? This morning, the Court of Appeal ruled


that the bedroom tax is discriminatory because of its


impact... I do not know why members opposite find this funny because it


is not for those who have to pay it. The ruling is because of its impact


on vulnerable people, including victims of domestic violence and


disabled children. Will the Prime Minister now read the judgment and


finally abandon this cruel and unjust policy which has now been


ruled to be illegal? We always look very carefully at judgment on these


occasions, but our fundamental position is that it is unfair to


subsidise their rooms in the social sector if you do not subsidise them


in the private sector where people are paying housing benefit. That is


a basic issue of fairness. It is interesting that the first played he


makes is something that could cost as much as ?2.5 billion in the next


Parliament. Who will pay for that? Jeff will pay for it. People handing


in their tax returns will pay for it. Why is it he wants to see more


welfare, higher taxes, more borrowing, all the things that got


us into the mess in the first place? We have not had any answers on


Google or the bedroom tax. I ask the Prime Minister this, shortly before


coming into the chamber I became aware of the final report of the


United Nations panel of experts on Yemen which has been sent to the


government and it makes disturbing reading. It says, I quote, it has


documented that coalition forces have conducted air strikes,


targeting civilians and civilian objects in violation of


international humanitarian law, including cabs for internally


displaced persons, civilian residential areas, medical


facilities, schools and mosques. This is a disturbing report. Will


the Prime Minister launched immediately and inquiry and a full


review into the arms export licences to Saudi Arabia and suspend those


arms sales until that review has been concluded? We have the


strictest rules for arms exports of almost any country anywhere in the


world. We are not a member of the Saudi led coalition. We are not


involved in their operations, British personnel are not involved


in carrying out strikes. I will look at this report as I looked at all


other reports, but arms exports are carefully controlled and we are


backing the legitimate government of the Yemen not least because


terrorist attacks planned in the Yemen would have a direct effect on


people in our country. I refuse to run a foreign policy by press


release, which is what he wants, I want one in the interests of the


British people. The explosion of spurious legal


claims against British troops including those pursued by a law


firm who has contributed tens of thousands of pounds to the Shadow


Defence Secretary, undermine the ability of our Armed Forces to do


their job. Will the Prime Minister join me in repudiating the disdain


this shows that our brave service women and men? I absolutely agree


with my honourable friend. We hold our service personnel to the highest


standards, and that is right, but it is quite clear there is now an


industry trying to profit by spurious claims. I am determined to


do everything we can to close this bogus industry down and we should


start by making clear we will take action against any legal firm we


fight to abuse the system to pursue is fabricated claims. That is


absolutely not acceptable. May I begin by associating the Scottish


national party with the comments of the Prime Minister in reference to


the Holocaust Memorial Day, and I commend governments across the UK


for supporting the Holocaust commemoration trust. Does the prime


ministers agreed that there is no justification for discrimination or


and fairness towards women in the private sector, public sector or by


government? Let me welcome what the right honourable gentleman says


about the Holocaust educational trust. I remember as a new


constituency MP meeting them and seeing the work they were doing in


my constituency. They work hard around the clock. This day is


particularly important for them. I would urge colleagues who haven't


visited Auschwitz, it is something you will never forget, no matter


what you have read or films you have seen or books you have read, there


is nothing like seeing for yourself. In terms of wanting to end


discrimination against women in the public sector, private sector, and


in politics, absolutely. I welcome what the Prime Minister has to say


on both accounts. He is aware of the state pension inequality which is


impacting on many women and that this parliament voted unanimously


for the government to immediately introduce transitional arrangements


for those women negatively affected by pension equalisation. What is the


Prime Minister going to do to respect the decision of this


parliament and help those women who are affected, those born in the


1950s, who should have had proper notice to plan their finances and


retirement? First of all, the equalisation of the retirement age


came about on the basis of equality, which was a judgment by the European


court that we put in place in the 90s. When this government decided,


rightly in my view, to raise the retirement age, we made the decision


that nobody should suffer a greater than 18 month increase in their


retirement age, and that is the decision this else took. In terms of


ending discrimination in the system, I would say that the introduction of


the single tier pension, at ?165 a week, is one of the best ways we can


end discrimination because so many who are retiring will get much more


under this pension which, under this government, is triple lock


protected, so they will get inflation earnings or 2.5% and never


again a derisory increase. Our prisons could still beat centres of


radicalisation. We'll be Prime Minister look at all measures


including those from the all-party report on preventing young people,


troubled young people, from falling into the jaws of these dangerous,


screwed up, predatory extremists? It is very disturbing that, when people


are in our care, when the state is looking after them, that, on


occasion, they have been radicalised because of what they have erred in


prison, either from other prisoners or perhaps, on occasion, from


visiting imams. We need to sort the situation out. The Justice Secretary


has put in place a review. I will look carefully at her report. We


must look at making sure that prisoners and the radicalise rather


than made worse. Since the Chancellor took control of the


public purse, he has utterly failed to get the deficit under control,


and to date this year he has borrowed over ?74 billion to plug


the gap or, to use the vernacular that his party is bond, for a


hypothetical independent Scotland, a monumental black hole in his books.


Is he now likely to reach the target by the year of something in the


region of ?9 billion? Will the Prime Minister finally concede...


SHOUTING I don't wish to be an guide to the


honourable lady, but I think we have got the gist.


SHOUTING That was a polite way of saying that


the honourable lady had concluded. I would say that the Chancellor and


the economic strategy this government has pursued as cut the


deficit in half from the record level we inherited and soon it will


be down by two thirds. We are meeting what we want to see in terms


of debt falling as a share of GDP. What a contrast with a situation


which Scotland would be facing if Scotland had voted for independence


in just six weeks' time. We have actually seen a collapse of 94% of


oil revenues. Because we have the broad shoulders of the UK, that


collapsed in the oil price and the taxation won't affect people in


Scotland but, at Scotland dream independent, it would be a very dark


day indeed. -- had Scotland been independent. I recently helped a


mental health -- mental health forum where I broad service users and


commissioners together to explore how we could improve mental health


services. And I welcome the Prime Minister's Wiese and announcement on


increased funding for mental health services? -- recent announcement.


His commitments are a clear indication of our desire to have a


revolution in mental health services in Britain, and he has delivered


some commitments on that. I am grateful to what my honourable


friend says. There is further to go by this government is investing more


in mental health, we have introduced waiting times. Young people


suffering episodes of psychosis should be seen within two weeks.


There is funding, parity of esteem, waiting time, but there also needs


to be a bigger culture change, not just in the NHS but across the


public and private sectors so mental health commissions are given the


attention they deserve. From this April, a woman who works full-time


stands to lose thousands of pounds in tax credits if she becomes


pregnant with her first child. When will this prime ministers stop


attacking working people? Forwarding like that, we are making sure that


this year they can earn ?11,000 without paying any income tax. If


they are on low wages, the minimum wage, they get a 7% pay increase


because of the national living wage. For the first time, there will be 30


hours of free childcare for those people. That is what we are doing


for hard-working people. Do we need to look at reforming welfare? Yes,


we do. If the honourable gentleman read the report into why his party


lost the election, not the one that they published, the secret one that


we read over the weekend, it is by endlessly arguing for higher and


higher welfare the British public rightly concluded that, under


Labour, there would be higher taxes. I warmly welcome the Prime


Minister's words on creating a national memorial to the victims of


the Holocaust. Tonight in Harrow, representatives of the whole


community will come together to listen to be people who survived the


Holocaust, because that is the only way we can really preserve their


memory. My right honourable friend is rightly alluded to the wonderful


work of the Holocaust educational trust in allowing literally


thousands of young people to visit Auschwitz and see for themselves


first-hand. Will he commit the government to continue funding the


Holocaust educational trust so that many thousands more can see the


horrors of the Holocaust? I certainly can make that commitment.


We have funded it by over ?10 million since I became Prime


Minister. It does excellent work. I think there is a real need now, as


tragically the remaining Holocaust survivors are coming to the end of


their lives, many of them are now speaking up in the most moving and


powerful way. I will be sending some time today with some of them,


recording their test dummies, which must be part of our memorial --


testimonies, we must capture that for generations to come. In 2013,


the energy and climate change select committee recommended extending the


retention of business rates to include new build nuclear power


stations. The centre for nuclear excellence is in my constituency and


the new build is a vital for our economic prosperity. Given the


government cuts to Cumbrian councils, does the Prime Minister


agree that, if we are to truly build a northern powerhouse, our local


authorities must retain all from nuclear new-build? We are committed


to the new nuclear industry. We are obviously making good progress with


Hinkley Point but we need to see another big station go ahead. I will


look carefully at what she says about business rate retention and


business rates more broadly, but the most important thing is to have an


energy infrastructure that allows for the delivery of new nuclear


power stations. That is the position on this side of the house. A closed


question. This government is committed to regenerating coastal


towns and ensuring that everybody, regardless of where they live, as


access to high quality public services and the best opportunities.


On this question, Ian Paisley. I beg your pardon, Mr Vickers first. I


thank the Prime Minister for his reply and I recognised the


initiatives that the government has taken. He will know that many


coastal towns like Cleethorpes suffer from poor educational


standards. We have many high performing academies who are trying


to reverse that and to ensure that our young people have access to


sports, arts and culture at the highest level. The council are


currently preparing a report with the private sector. Will he commit


the government to work with the council to deliver regeneration to


Cleethorpes? Nobody could silence the voice of the number! I think my


honourable friend is right and I am happy to look at that proposal with


him. We have to make sure we tackle both failing schools and coastal


schools, and there are some in coastal areas. One of the issues is


making sure we get talented teachers and leaders into those schools, and


that is what the national leaders of education service is all about.


Wratten Island is the only inhabited coastal village town in my


constituency. No British Prime Minister has ever had the privilege


to visit. I hope that the Prime Minister will make a plan to visit,


which has considerable economic needs. I am the first British by


Minister to visit many parts of the country. The first to go to


Shetland! I fear that, if I were to visit, many people might like me to


stay there. But I will bear it in mind. Rugby is the fastest growing


town in the West Midlands with work underway to provide 6200 much-needed


new homes at the Rugby radio site, but my constituents are keen to


ensure that public services keep pace with developers and


particularly to seek more services at the local hospital. Does the


prime ministers agreed with the NHS chief executive that district


hospitals such as this play an excellent role in the NHS? I am a


believer in district general hospitals and I know what a strong


support of Saint Crossed he is. I know there is a dedicated outpatient


facility there. We are going to achieve these very aggressive


house-building targets that we put forward, there will be more houses


built in most our constituencies. As far as we can, we will try to


welcome that, that is important, and to make sure that the infrastructure


is provided. Not everybody is as satisfied as the Chancellor with


what, for Google, is loose change to cover their tax liabilities. On


Monday, the honourable member for ABBA valley called on the government


to make companies publish their tax returns. In that way, we can all see


how they make the journey from their tax profits to their tax bill. Does


the Prime Minister agree? I want to wonder whether the right honourable


lady whether raised this issue when she sat in the Labour cabinet, when


Google were paying no tax. What we have is a situation where we make


the rules in this house and where HMAC ether to enforce them. That is


the system that we need to make work. -- H MRC. As cancer survival


rates continue to improve, and given that this is cancer talk week, will


my right honourable friend join me in welcoming a new state cancer


information centre due to enter at Royal Bolton hospital, and praise


the commitment of Midland cancer care, Bolton hospice, and the local


cancer commissioning group, who are all making this happening is to mark


--? Everybody in this house knows a family member who has been touched


by cancer. The good news is that cancer survival rates are improving.


We need to make sure they improve across all cancers, not just the


best-known ones. What he says is that this is not just an issue for


the NHS but all of those because IT bodies which also want to campaign


and act on helping cancer sufferers. --. In 2014I wrote to the Prime


Minister asking him to join the Scottish Government and Highland


Council in taking forward a city deal for Inverness. Highland Council


have submitted a detailed plan on the region for young people. Will be


Prime Minister committed to giving this the green light in the coming


weeks? We are committed to examining the city deal with Inverness, as we


have made good progress with Aberdeen. I think these bring


together the best of what the Scottish Government can put on the


table but also the best of what the UK Government can put on the table


because, without wanting to be too political, the two governments


working together can do even more. Could I thank the Prime Minister for


meeting the deposed mould even Prime Minister -- president on Saturday?


Will he work towards an international consensus on targeted


sanctions so that the regime of the Maldives may reconsider their


appalling human rights record and their record on democracy? It was an


honour to meet with the former president, who I think did an


excellent job for his country in cutting out corruption and turning


that country around. He suffered terribly by being in prison and it


is good that he is able to get out to seek medical treatment, but we


want to see a change in behaviour from the government of the Maldives,


to make sure political prisoners are set free, and we are prepared to


consider targeted action against individuals if progress isn't made.


Let's hope that diplomatic efforts will lead to the changes we want to


see, but Britain, and our allies, including Sri Lanka and India,


watching situation carefully. 46% of five-year-old children in Bradford


suffer from dental decay compared with 28% across England, and less


than half the children living in Bradford district has seen a dentist


in the last two years. Given the cost of treating toothpick care --


tooth decay, they exceed the cost of prevention, would the Prime Minister


look at dental provision in the area? If you take a view across the


country, before 2010, we had huge queues around the block when a new


NHS dentist turned up was there were not enough. They may not and shake


their heads, but that is what happened. Some of us can remember.


We have seen a big increase in NHS dentistry, but I will look carefully


at the situation in Bradford. As my right honourable friend knows, a


task force is set to deliver its report on a resilient railway to


Devon and Cornwall. Would the Prime Minister be prepared to meet with me


and a number of colleagues to make sure that Network Rail and the task


force is enough for two studies, the electrification of the line and the


reduction in journey time is necessary to do this? I had an


excellent meeting with the south coast -- south-west peninsula task


force and I will make sure that I continue to liaise closely with


them. We need to find an answer and we need to find the funding. We


can't have happen what happened in the past, where a problem on our


Railways led to the peninsula being cut off. Would be Prime Minister


join me in congratulating my constituents, Dominic and Rebecca


from Mitcham, on the birth of their daughter, Alice. Like every parents,


they want their daughter to have better opportunities than they had


but, with average London house prices increasing by ?40,000 in 2013


alone, and the average house in London being now worth over half ?1


million, does he understand their fears and Alice will never have the


chance they had to buy her own home in the area she was born in? I want


to help Alice and many like her get on the housing ladder, which is why


we are introducing shared ownership, which brings housing in reach of


many more people. It is why we have helped by London, which is twice as


generous as the rest of the country. It is why we selling off the most


expensive council houses and rebuilding more affordable homes. --


help to buy London. These are all under the guidance and drive of Zac


Goldsmith, who will make an excellent...


SHOUTING That is the best chance of a home,


to have a Conservative mayor and a Conservative government working hand


in glove. Someone experiencing a mental health crisis who goes in


desperation to A needs prompt specialist help. Can I welcome my


right honourable friend's recognition of psychiatric liaison?


Does he agree that 20 47 psychiatric liaison in A is an important step


towards self-esteem? We are seeing more mental health and psychiatric


liaison in our A We need overtime to see it in all. So often


people are arriving not in the right setting, where they should be


looking after. Whether it is getting people with mental health conditions


out of police cells or making sure they are treated properly in prison


or, crucially, when they arrived in A, make sure they get this


treatment is very much part of our plan. I commend the Prime Minister


for his remarks about Holocaust Memorial Day. In honouring the


memory of those murdered by the Nazis, we provide the best candidate


to extremism and anti-Semitism anti-Semitism in our age. The


biggest challenge Europe today is the predicted 3 million refugees who


will flood into Europe. Does he agree that the only way to challenge


a crisis of that magnitude is by starting working with our European


colleagues at the heart of a united Europe? Would you take this


opportunity to welcome in and provide a home for the 3000


unaccompanied children, as recommended by save the children?


Where I agree with the right honourable gentleman is the


importance of taking action to help with this crisis. No country in


Europe has been more generous than Britain in funding refugees, whether


they are in Syria, Turkey, Lebanon or Jordan. Where I don't agree with


the right honourable gentleman is thinking that the right answer is


for Britain to opt into the EU relocation and resettlement schemes.


Let me tell him as for why. We said we will resettle 20,000 people in


our country. We promised 1000 by Christmas. Because of the hard work


of the honourable member for Watford, we achieved that. If you


add up all that Europe has done under its relocation scheme and its


recent resettlement scheme, they have done less than we have done in


the UK. Yes, we should take part in European schemes when it is in our


interests, helped to secure the external European border, but we are


out of the Schengen agreement, we keep our own borders and, under this


government, that is how it will stay.


The Prime Minister referred to those in the calorie count as a bunch of


migrants. We welcome back to that in a minute. As expected, the Leader of


the Opposition went on the tax settlement. It will make the news


tomorrow as well. Jeremy Corbyn raising the question of whether the


HMRC has really raised as much as it could have done over a tax


settlement that goes back to 2005 with a company that generates


billions of pounds every year. The Prime Minister retorted it had not


paid any tax under Labour and I guess the general line of the


government is 130 million is better than nothing. It went back and


forward a bit like that. Let's hear from our experts and a minute.


First, let's hear how you reacted. The tax settlement angered many of


our viewers. Thomas said, can I pay 3% tax on my earnings? Somebody


said, love it, ten minutes in and Cameron is losing his rag. Someone


says, I would like to pay the same rate as Google.


Michael says labour and Jeremy Corbyn are returning to the spiked


agenda. The Prime Minister handled this attack with ease. John Glenn


says, it is becoming pitiable. I feel sorry for Jeremy Corbyn, camera


and savages him every week and makes him look ill suited to the role.


Somebody says, you cannot equate Google in 2009 and Google today,


that shows how bad he is at fairness. And the Prime Minister's


use of the phrase a bunch of migrants. Chuka Umunna says it is


inflammatory and unbecoming of his office. Diane Ah but said it was


callous. Was that appropriate language? We often have debate about


the language used by Prime Minister and other prominent politicians,


particularly in the cauldron of the House of commons with a lot of


pressure and hundreds of MPs baying at you. It is an excuse for not


debating the real issue. Should we allow people count in Calais to come


to this country? The Prime Minister is getting it right in terms of


immigration policy. He is helping people in the camps in Syria. We


have got a huge overseas aid budget. But was it regrettable language? We


always talk about language, people have their views and the Prime


Minister said he did not agree with Jeremy Corbyn that the people camped


in Calais should come to this country and be given a free pass.


Does that include unaccompanied children? There was talk that


government may agree to unaccompanied children coming in? I


have seen that talked and I gather it is being considered. I do not


know if there was a conclusion reached. There are a range of issues


you have to take into account, the law of unintended consequences, but


the government will look at this issue. I can see in some way where


the Google story goes because Apple, Amazon, Facebook are in the line for


the same sort of treatment and I guess HMRC will come under pressure


to be tougher with those that are still outstanding. But given HMRC is


bound not to release the details of how it has calculated the 130


million, I am not sure where this story goes next. In terms of new


events and consequences of all the political anger, it is not clear


either. But a spikier Jeremy Corbyn today succeeded in keeping this


going, it will go for another 24 hours. It winds up members of the


public, there is no question about that. At the same time David Cameron


was very well prepped for that attack. It was inevitable he would


go on that. Reading out the list of the senior members of the former


Labour government now working for financial firms was designed to


embarrass Jeremy Corbyn. The attack was Labour did not do anything about


this either. But it is the kind of issue where Labour think they can


make some ground by keeping the issue going and saying they are on


the side of the ordinary person saying, this is not fair. The


government needs all the money it can get. There was an implication


the government was too close to Google and there was a lot of


personal contact. But it may be a bit of a stretch to think that the


closeness has resulted in a lower tax bill. Indeed. Jeremy Corbyn was


almost suggesting there talking about contacts between the firms


that there was some kind of interference. I agree, that is a bit


of a stretch. It would be a great story if it was true. Yes, it would,


but when you look at the lifestyle of the story, it is a mistake for


George Osborne to claim it was a victory. He put himself in the story


and ask for the credit and it turns out not to have been such a triumph


after all in the public mind and he is left with a difficult position,


it is difficult politically to claim credit for something and when it


does not turn out to be such a try and say it is nothing to do with me.


Did Number Ten distance themselves? After the coverage at the weekend


they were not going to go on the record and say it was a marvellous


success. As ever, these things are sometimes overdone. If George


Osborne had not tweeted it, it would not have been politicised in the


same way? They would have been a bit of a rumpus, but not in the same


way. Yvette Cooper has raised as a point of order the Prime Minister's


remark, a bunch of migrants. I thought it was surprising he used


it. I thought he was in full flow and probably a bit angry and


sometimes you say things you do not need to. Having just announced the


Holocaust memorial to then say a bunch of migrants, he will be


particularly jarred. I was also surprised by Jeremy Corbyn not


taking a segue to react to that, given he had been in the camps and


have called for unaccompanied children to come here and for


Britain to be more generous. Did he miss an opportunity? I was shocked


when I heard the Prime Minister say it, it was offensive, hurtful,


divisive. It is not the first time we have heard David Cameron slip up


in this way. I appreciate what you say about the heat of the moment,


but this kind of language when you are a Prime Minister is so important


to get it right. Jeremy Corbyn is also under pressure in the heat of


the moment. But I think we were all really taken aback and silenced.


Except Jeremy Corbyn had been there and he had seen these people in the


camps. The Prime Minister has not been there. There is the question


about whether we should not be more generous about our treatment of


unaccompanied children, some of whom were in that camp. I think we should


be speaking out really clearly from a moral position about our


obligations towards those very vulnerable children at every


opportunity. What Jeremy saw in the camps will have brought home to him


about the horror of what those children are going through. We


should be looking for opportunities across all parties to use the right


language and to develop policies to bring these children here as quickly


as possible. The run-up to the referendum, even the negotiation and


up to the February summit and beyond, the backdrop of developing


events in Europe could be horrendous and particularly horrendous for


those who want this country to stay in Europe.


There is no question this is in minister 's mind. That is part of


the reason they are trying to get this deal done in February, partly


because the expectation is that, in coming months and through the


summer, the huge volumes of people and the distress that we see night


after night on our television screens is not going to get better,


and it may get worse. Politically, the situation is so much more acute


now, now that we also see the kind of chaos and suffering in European


capitals. This is no longer what we see, a question about people


moving... In the Balkans. Indeed, places the British voters are


familiar with, places they might have been on holiday. That might


sound crass, but this is part of the population that ministers are aware


of, the broader canvas of what is going on in the world when we choose


whether to stay or leave the EU, in a lot of people's minds, that will


be more significant than the campaigns themselves.


Now, how old should you be before you're allowed to stick an X


on a ballot paper and stick it in a box?


Well, like the UK most people around the world are allowed to vote


Some buck the trend and opt for 21, like Cameroon for example.


Others, like Austria, have recently lowered


Some people want to do the same here, but should we in fact be


Here's political journalist Samual Hooper with


Going to university used to signify growing up,


leaving the family nest and taking your first steps


as an adult but, for a growing number of today's students,


Many of today's students want to turn university campuses


and students' unions into safe spaces, where


dissenting and controversial ideas are banned and free speech


is suspended for their mental safety.


MUSIC: Teenage Kicks by The Undertones.


Student activists have taken to banning


clapping in meetings, claiming that it triggers anxiety,


and some are now even demanding the airbrushing


or rewriting of history to remove any reference to controversial


figures from the past, like Cecil Rhodes.


Students here in the Oxford union voted last week to remove his statue


If students want to be treated like emotionally fragile children,


do they not forfeit the right to have a


We don't let children drink, smoke or drive.


Ironically, there is currently a push to lower the voting age


in the UK, giving 16 and 17-year-olds the right to take


But, since this generation of students feel harmed


by hearing dissenting opinions or the mere act of public debate,


rather than talking about lowering the voting age, shouldn't we be


I am assured that you are over the age of 25, at least. What age would


you raise the voting age to? It is an interesting question, and I am


not the only one who has brought this up. After a number of


high-profile incidents on American the respected American law professor


and blogger Glenn Reynolds suggested raising the age to 25, which was


after we saw Yale students go berserk over a flash in the pan


drama over Halloween costumes. We saw the university of Missouri drum


the team out of his job and then he insisted -- they apologise that he


go and apologise for male privilege. Does that justify a campaign to


raise the voting age? If you look at the background of these demands for


trigger warnings and safe spaces, students saying that they feel


emotionally fragile, they are encountering an opinion which goes


against their views, akin to being physically punched in the face. They


take it as if they are incurring emotional harm. I am saying, if you


believe you are incurring emotional harm, maybe wait a few years before


you enter the rough world of politics. It is heavy punishment on


all young people of 18-25, denying them the right to vote because of a


handful of student unions behaving liberally. I watched some of the


youth Parliament earlier, and you saw some of the brightest 16 and


17-year-olds you will ever see. Something seems to happen when you


hit the age of 18. I don't know why, something goes crazy and... We say


it is only a few students, but we take our view from America and this


problem is getting a lot bigger in the US. People's careers are being


ended, people's curriculum is limited. You were there inside the


Oxford union. They make a point of inviting controversial speakers, and


they have done over the decades, from Nick Griffin, Marine Le Pen, OJ


Simpson, which I suggest is encouraging free debate. Let's put


the point Ed Vaizey, who was laughing, about what happens when


you turn 18. Do you think people are responsible enough at age 18? The


thesis seemed to be developing that, given your experience of the youth


Parliament, you could have the vote for 16-18 and then lose it and get


it back at 25! I think people are responsible at 18. Kate and I go to


our secondary schools and talk to 16 -- sixth formers. They are extremely


articulate. I wouldn't go to 16, but I totally understand people who


campaign for it. I don't think it is a ridiculous suggestion. I am happy


with the status quo. I think 18 is right. But you meet a lot of


articular and intelligent people younger than that, just as you meet


people who are older who are not. There have been these examples of a


liberal activity, depriving students of free speech, trying to stop


Germaine Greer, for example, coming to Cardiff university because of her


views on transgender people, and the debate over the Cecil Rhodes statue.


Is this an indication that there is a lack of maturity among students,


that they are trying to clamp down on free speech? I don't think it is


a new thing. There have always been controversies in universities over


who will be invited and given a platform, and that is part of


exploring boundaries and debating issues. We shouldn't forget that the


government is effectively clamping down on free speech in in


universities with some of its counter extremism proposals. I don't


think it is age related. It is a matter of getting the balance right.


Now, how do you like to spend your annual leave?


Are you like our Kate here, who enjoys sipping sangria


Or are you, like our Ed, more of an opera in Tuscany sort


Or would you rather spend your holidays somewhere


# Get your passport and your bikini You need a holiday, come see me


# I know you're tired of the same old scenery


# And I could change all that so easily


# Go wild, do your thing, yo, take a chance


# I'll take you to the South of France, like Cannes


And they should have never, ever, ever been in the country.


# There's just a few days in the year


# Plus I've got car So let's ride that...#


And that means saying no to Donald Trump.


Thank you everybody, thank you.


# If you ain't doing nothing let's fly away


# If you ain't doing nothing let's fly away


# We can go to the club or hide away


# We can do what you want to, baby...#


Well, one travel company has raised eyebrows by offering a ?2,370


package holiday to the European Parliament ahead


And as you saw, there are separate trips on offer to North Korea,


Israel and Palestine, Iran and the US in November


The travellers will spend their time not relaxing


on the beach, but instead having meetings with politicians


Nicholas Wood, the Director of Political Tours, joins me now.


Exactly why would I pay ?2500 to hang out in Brussels? Good question.


One could ask why people watch this programme. The same kind of people


come on our tours. Is it that bad? It is! Did this programme give you


the idea? I used to be a journalist and I had family who would come and


visit me in the Balkans. They found it fascinating. What would an


average night out in Brussels be on this trip? It is five days long...


Five days! You could go to Thailand for that! Some people enjoy opera


and beaches and other people like learning how the world ticks. It is


almost like having your own personal correspondent. You can go and get


access to P2 sacred places you might not be able to normally. -- access


to places. Andrew wants to go. Put his name down.


JoCo wants to go to North Korea. Could you arrange that? I got you a


present from Cuba. Where is mine? We can be bought. How much would you


pay not to see a European Parliament debate? How many people go on these


trips? Detours are quite small. You can't take a bus load of people...


Basically, you are trying to replicate what journalists do. We


take small groups between six and ten people and you get access to


people involved actively in politics. You have senior


correspondents working with you. It really brings the news to life. It


is like a seminar on tour. It is called Political Tours, the clue is


in the name. There are other package tours available. Monte Cristo, Romeo


and Juliet. The answer to Guess The Year was 2009. Could one of you


press the button? That was done tentatively. Carol and Gregory in


Reading, well done. -- Caroline Gregory. You have won a political


tour to North Korea as well as a mug. The one o'clock news is


starting on BBC One. I will be here tomorrow with all the usual


political stories of the day. Bye-bye.


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