11/03/2016 Daily Politics


11/03/2016

Andrew Neil is joined by journalists Miranda Green and Ben Chacko to discuss the EU referendum and Labour's economic plans. Plus, an interview with Caroline Pidgeon.


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Transcript


LineFromTo

Hello and welcome to the Daily Politics.

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The Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell aims to regain Labour's "economic

:00:41.:00:43.

credibility" by promising Labour will only borrow to invest.

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Boris Johnson ramps up his campaign for Britain to leave the EU,

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It's prompted scores of marches and countless protests,

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We'll discuss the EU's planned deal with the US,

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the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership.

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And could members of the European Parliament

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get their own dedicated chauffeur service to boost security

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

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Miranda Green, star of This Week, who also writes for the Finanical

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Times, and Ben Chacko, the star of the Morning Star,

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So in the last hour or so, Boris Johnson has been making

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Speaking at a transport and logistics company in outer

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London, Mr Johnson said Britain needed to "hold it's nerve"

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I know that there are people who say that this country doesn't

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have the guts to get out, that we have no choice

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I have to say I think they are hopelessly underestimating

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this country of ours and what we can achieve.

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Because it is precisely because we stayed out of the euro

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that we are now one of the most successful economies of Europe.

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If we burst out of the shackles of Brussels, we would be able

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to begin immediately with those long neglected free trade opportunities,

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Mr Johnson earlier this morning. Miranda, how big an asset, if you

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think he is an asset, is he to the league campaign? I think he is. He

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communicates brilliantly, unlike many of our top politicians. But I

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think there is a problem with this whole approach. It was quite clever

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speech this morning. There is no downside to Britain leaving the EU,

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will people really believe that? In a sense the leave campaign has some

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quite attractive people there which offsets the array of loonies that

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Downing Street is always keen to mention. They mention George

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Galloway as often as they can. Michael Gove and Boris Johnson are

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serious. And on the head of the conservative European Parliamentary

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party. But there is a problem with the thrust of Boris's speech which

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is quite swashbuckling and libertarian out of Europe. Is that

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the character of the UK? It is conservative, but it is risky going

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for this less be brave speech. The morning star in 1975 recommended we

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leave the EU. What is your position this time? We are hosting the debate

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leave the EU. What is your position on the left. The problem with what

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is going on at the moment is that both sides of the argument are

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dominated by the Conservative Party. Have you not made up your mind? The

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editorial position would be to leave. Coming on to your point, a

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lot of the reasons Boris Johnson gives for leaving would not be the

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ones you would give? No, they would not. The right of the Conservative

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Party are looking to attack certain rights and regulations they feel are

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written into European law, but on the other hand I would say the

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European Union is not a democratic institution which has a huge amount

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of neoliberal, free market regulations written into its

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treaties which are impossible to renegotiate. Boris Johnson said it

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is deranged. Their range? The EU. I think it is deranged. Their

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brinkmanship in Ukraine in 2014 and Russia, I think there is an element

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of a will to power with these EU leaders. And in the treatment of

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Greece, the will of the electorate was completely ignored. Jean-Claude

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Juncker said you cannot make a democratic decision to go against.

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They had the decision to leave and they chose not to. Yes, they could

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have left. In terms of the tactics, we do not know how Boris Johnson's

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speech will be treated by the public at large, it is too early to say.

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His performance with Andrew Marr was not regarded as stellar last Sunday.

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That is very polite. I am. But perhaps the way they go forward is

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that Michael Gove would do the big TV interviews and Boris Johnson

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would do the rally is reaching directly to the public. Michael Gove

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is an excellent debater and an intellectual force, so they should

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think about using him. But this whole story about the palace and the

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row over the Queen backing Brexit, Michael Gove's picture keeps

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appearing in the swallow up stories, so he needs to get that out of the

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way quite quickly. I think it was the corgis. You have a good source.

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Maybe they told Michael Gove. I do think it is this split with David

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Cameron and Osborne is they feel they can win the referendum by

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replaying the general election. You might not love us, but we are the

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confident, calm conservatives. If Michael Gove is not onside, that is

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a problem. Plenty more in the weeks ahead.

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The question for today is: President Obama has criticised

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David Cameron for becoming distracted and allowing

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Was it a) The special relationship b) The Situation in Libya

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c) British relations with the rest of the EU

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or d) The American Embassy in London?

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And a little later in the show we'll see if Miranda and Ben

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I think they will because they read the papers.

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Earlier this morning the Shadow Chancellor,

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John McDonnell, made a speech which had been billed as containing

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a significant announcement about Labour's economic policy,

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designed to restore the party's economic credibility.

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According to the Shadow Chancellor, the next Labour government

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will follow a new "Fiscal Credibility Rule".

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This means they would have to observe certain economic principles.

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The deficit on day to day spending would be eliminated.

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That means the government would not be borrowing money for things

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like welfare payments or public sector salaries.

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There could still be some borrowing, but this would go towards so-called

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"long-term" investment in infrastructure, homes,

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roads, railways, renewable energy and new technology.

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And the country's debt would fall over the period of a five-year

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All of this would be overseen by the Office

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for Budget Responsibility which would be given new powers

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to "whistleblow" if the government wasn't following the rules.

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Here's some of what John McDonnell had to say.

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We should show how we can account for every penny in tax revenue

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raised and every penny spent. There is nothing left wing about borrowing

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to cover day-to-day expenses and increasing debts. Borrowing today is

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money to repay tomorrow. With a greater and greater proportion of

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our government debt is now held by those in the rest of the world,

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government borrowing represents an net loss for those of us living

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here. The public, quite rightly, what a government that is

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We did ask the Labour Party for an interview with one

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of their treasury team, but no one was available.

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That is strange on the day of a new policy announcement.

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Instead we've been joined by the economist Jonathan Portes,

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from the National Institute of Economic and Social Research,

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who has been working with members of John McDonnell's economic

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We balance current spending and borrowing to invest. Is that not

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Gordon Brown? Brown, Ed Balls and Osborne. That is correct. This is

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improved, but not radically different the rules between 1997 and

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2015. All of those rules had the basic principle of balancing the

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current budget, borrowing for investment spending and aiming to

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get stepped down as a proportion of GDP over time. It is Osborne's

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current raft, not a radical departure. He is attempting to move

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to an overall surplus. Exactly. What was the point of consulting all

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these Nobel prize-winning economists and doing these tours of the

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country. We have ended up back to the future. Hopefully the Nobel

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Prize winners gave him some radical, new ideas. But the basic

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housekeeping staff you need fairly boring people like me to tell you to

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do something reasonably good. What is the difference between short-term

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investment and long-term investment? That is a good question. I am not

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sure it really means anything to be honest. In practice the definition

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of investment is done not by the government, the Office for National

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Statistics will make the rule and that is what it will look like. It

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does raise some questions we do not have the answer to. If you go into a

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balance current spending, you have to tell us how you will do that.

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Labour will have to tell us. In many ways current spending involves some

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of the most sensitive areas of public spending, nurses' pay,

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teachers' pay, welfare, things that matter a lot to Labour and we do not

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know how we are going to do that. That is right and I am not sure

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anyone knows. But they will have to tell us? Absolutely and fiscal rule

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forces you to make choices. You have to set out priorities and what you

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will spend money on and raise taxes on. There is an assumption that

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infrastructure spending will lead in the medium, not necessarily the

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short-term, but in medium to long-term to higher economic growth.

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It will raise national productivity to put it that way. It is not

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necessarily always true. HS2, ?50 billion for high-speed rail. Well

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that raise economic growth? It probably will, but it is not the

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best use of ?50 billion. First of all, there is a lot of cross-country

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evidence that overall investment spending is good, it does boost

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growth and productivity. In broad terms it is sensible. But there is

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no point spending money on white elephants and we have had our share

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of those. Hinkley Point C? It is possibly an even worse investment

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that HS2. Fiscal rule does not tell you how to spend the money and it

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does not guarantee you will spend the money wisely. There are still a

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lot of difficult choices to make. If you are going to attempt to balance

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current spending, but continue to borrow to invest in absolute terms

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you will always run a deficit? Well, if you just get ballots. There is

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nothing that stops you overachieving. It would be harder to

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run a big surplus. If I am borrowing, to balance the budget I

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would have to run a surplus of 50 billion on current spending. That is

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right. But in the first couple of years, even though Brown had broadly

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the same type of rule, we did run a surplus for a bit, so it is not

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impossible. But most of the time under this rule we would be running

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deficits, that is right. But not getting overall debt down? No

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economist would say it was remotely relevant. Even after World War II we

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had a debt to GDP ratio of well over 200% and we got it down by 30%. In

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the days of higher growth, most major economies are struggling to

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get over 2% growth and in the eurozone we cannot manage that. It

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may be a different age. That is a worry, but you do not solve that by

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restrictive fiscal policy. We and other countries elsewhere will have

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to do something to restore growth. Are you disappointed by this from

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John McDonnell? I think he has done a good job of

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challenging the nation was an accreditation with finances. It is

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not fiscally prudent to sell off our stake in the Eurostar for a windfall

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when the public lose a valuable asset, and you can say the same

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about the privatisation of the national Royal Mail, or the way we

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have allowed Google to choose how much tax they pay. These are the

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behaviours... But his economic policies, as we have heard, it is

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more of Mr Brown and Mr Paulson. It is a physical decision. He is making

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a sensible point that it is not about spending more money than you

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have got, it is about taking the economic decisions that allowed the

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country to be run more fairly. For example, if you took action to

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control soaring rent, then you would not have the same housing benefit.

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But that is not macro economic policy. This is about macro economic

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policy, an announcement, and it is pretty indistinct a ball from

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previous Labour policy. What I'm saying is that it is perfectly

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possible to radically restructure the economy without committing to

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spend more money than you take in in tax. Back to the morning Star,

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presumably? That is another breakthrough this morning.

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Consensus. What you make of it? I think it is very interesting because

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there is a lot of chat, as we know, about the Labour leadership. Is this

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or is this not part of the long journey towards a electability.

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Being considered competent on the economy is part of what Labour needs

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to do. But the other part of that is leadership. And Rachel Reid, a much

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more mainstream centre-left figure than John McDonnell was saying

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something very similar a few days ago, writing for the times. Will

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peace and consensus broke out on the Labour benches over what has been

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said on the economy? Possibly, but it does not solve the party's

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problems. What is next in Labour's economic policy? I don't know is the

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short answer. I have no role with the Labour Party. I understand you

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are not a member of the Labour Party, but I think you have been

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helpful. Simon Wren Lewis and I wrote research on fiscal roles which

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underpins the announcement today but Simon is the one announcing them --

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advising them. I think they will have to do something. The issue you

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talked about before, what do we do to restart growth in a way that we

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have not seen, particularly wage growth that we have not seen much of

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over the last decade, that is a key problem for politicians of all

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parties, quite frankly. Reverting to our last chat together, are we

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getting anywhere with these national insurance numbers? I got a bit of

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stuff out of DWP yesterday on the data underpinning the Prime

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minister's Bazaar and not well founded complaint about 40% of

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recent migrants being on minimum wage. I'm still waiting for the real

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stuff from HMRC. It will either generate

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huge economic gains, or undermine democracy

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and damage the NHS. The Transatlantic Trade

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and Investment Partnership has divided opinion and provoked

:18:28.:18:29.

countless protest marches. NEWSREEL: All Americans are glad

:18:30.:18:31.

about the new trade agreement with Britain, but perhaps

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the gladdest is the US For him this link between Britain

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and America is the realisation For all of our lifetimes there have

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been trade agreements between the US and Britain

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as well as Europe. We are talking about what could be

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the biggest bilateral trade But TTIP, or the Transatlantic

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Trade and Investment Partnership, could, according

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to those pushing it, go beyond anything

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we have known before. The negotiations

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started back in 2013. A deal that can add as much

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as ?100 billion to the EU economy, ?80 billion to the US

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economy, and as much as ?85 billion

:19:17.:19:18.

to the rest of the world. This is a once-in-a-generation prize

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and we are determined to seize it. America and Europe have

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done extraordinary things together before and I believe

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we can forge an economic alliance as strong as our diplomatic

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and security alliances. The basic principle

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of TTIP is to cut tariffs and regulatory barriers to trade

:19:40.:19:42.

between the US and EU countries. Supporters say simply it would make

:19:43.:19:44.

it easier for companies on both sides of the Atlantic to access

:19:45.:19:47.

each other's markets. It is a good idea because

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firstly our two markets account for a quarter of all global

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trade and easier means -- and making it easier means we

:19:56.:20:04.

will benefit more collectively, because the economy will receive a

:20:05.:20:08.

boost as a result, and individually as the benefits trickle down to

:20:09.:20:09.

households. And yet no deal has been agreed

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and there is already Among the arguments

:20:11.:20:13.

critics say because tariffs between the US

:20:14.:20:15.

and the EU are already low, this is more about deregulation

:20:16.:20:18.

and that could impact for example on food standards,

:20:19.:20:20.

the EU having much stricter regulation on things

:20:21.:20:23.

like hormones in animals. The logic of TTIP is

:20:24.:20:28.

removing regulatory barriers, so there is no possibility

:20:29.:20:30.

of raising standards in TTIP. We have had that expectedly said

:20:31.:20:37.

by the UK Government, -- explicitly said by the UK

:20:38.:20:41.

government, so that is clear. It is only about trying to make it

:20:42.:20:46.

easier for big business to trade and invest across the Atlantic,

:20:47.:20:49.

without having to worry about environmental,

:20:50.:20:52.

public health or food Critics also warn that companies

:20:53.:20:53.

would be able to sue foreign governments over claims

:20:54.:20:58.

of unfair treatment and be Essentially they say that

:20:59.:21:00.

could undermine the government's right to regulate in

:21:01.:21:03.

the public's interest. Those involved in negotiations

:21:04.:21:05.

had originally hoped to have a deal by

:21:06.:21:09.

the end of this year. Since the end of the Second World

:21:10.:21:20.

War, there has been a constant liberalisation of trade policy

:21:21.:21:23.

across the world. It is a long way to go, but trade has never been more

:21:24.:21:29.

free in the modern world and it has resulted in a massive increase in

:21:30.:21:33.

global wealth, and trade has brought millions and millions of people out

:21:34.:21:36.

of poverty. Why would we stop that process? I don't think that anyone

:21:37.:21:42.

is saying we should stop the process of trade, we are seeing that TTIP is

:21:43.:21:47.

a very secretive deal which is being hammered out behind closed doors and

:21:48.:21:51.

not even our elected representatives in Parliament are allowed to see

:21:52.:21:54.

what is being agreed to, which is dangerous. This is a treaty which

:21:55.:21:58.

will enshrine corporate rights over the rights of sovereign nations, so

:21:59.:22:04.

with the investor states settlement clause, companies will be able to

:22:05.:22:07.

sue governments for passing laws which they think affect profits.

:22:08.:22:11.

We've seen that already in Germany, where a company is suing the German

:22:12.:22:16.

government because it decided to phase out nuclear power stations

:22:17.:22:18.

after the Fukushima disaster in Japan, and the company invested in

:22:19.:22:25.

that station says it affects their profits. Do you want to sign up to a

:22:26.:22:28.

deal that restricts the ability of the public to decide what policies

:22:29.:22:32.

are government follows? If you raise them ways, they could say it affects

:22:33.:22:38.

profits, and if we do not pursue fracking, they could sue us. We

:22:39.:22:42.

should not give corporations those kind of powers. Does the deal

:22:43.:22:48.

contained these powers? I think there are arguments on both sides.

:22:49.:22:51.

The only way you can hammer out a trade deal that works is to be part

:22:52.:22:55.

of the negotiation and tackle the things you think are unfair and

:22:56.:22:58.

improve the deal. Nicola Sturgeon, for example, who is not exactly a

:22:59.:23:05.

crazy right-winger, has said that she worries about TTIP, but the way

:23:06.:23:11.

to solve those worries is to engage. How are we supposed to engage when

:23:12.:23:14.

the negotiations are conducted in secret? I think TTIP is significant

:23:15.:23:22.

at the moment because people like yourselves, and people on the left

:23:23.:23:26.

of the Labour Party are very against TTIP because they fear the idea of a

:23:27.:23:32.

globalised ruthless, big business, as Kim up in the film, they never

:23:33.:23:36.

talk about small businesses being free to trade more liberally, it is

:23:37.:23:40.

always wicked big business, and this is a problem because it feeds into

:23:41.:23:45.

the referendum campaign. It has been a blind spot on the left. I gather

:23:46.:23:49.

there will be an anti-TTIP process soon with a lot of people from the

:23:50.:23:53.

left of the Labour Party involved. The worry on this issue is that it

:23:54.:23:56.

could cause the left wing of the Labour Party that is not pulling its

:23:57.:24:00.

weight in the running campaign at the moment, maybe if people on the

:24:01.:24:08.

left do not turn up and vote no, maybe they will abstain or not

:24:09.:24:12.

campaign in earnest. -- the Remain campaign. TTIP tells us a lot about

:24:13.:24:23.

the... The trade Commissioner said he does not take his mandate from

:24:24.:24:26.

the European people. She was saying it does not matter if people object

:24:27.:24:29.

to the deal but the EU will force it through anyway. One of the other

:24:30.:24:32.

things the left has to remember is that the European Union is

:24:33.:24:35.

responsible for a bunch of protections for workers. You have to

:24:36.:24:40.

have one and the other. If you are going to protect the idea of

:24:41.:24:47.

economic growth for the member nations, and Andrew made a good case

:24:48.:24:51.

that increasing trade helps everyone and provides jobs, you have to have

:24:52.:24:56.

a balance between tackling excessive regulation and protecting the

:24:57.:24:59.

workforce. I think there is an unhealthy alliance. Though needs to

:25:00.:25:01.

be more transparency. We detail of what has been agreed so

:25:02.:25:07.

that we can test the criticisms, which I think people will be

:25:08.:25:10.

surprised that you have to go that far to have a free trade agreement.

:25:11.:25:14.

And then there is the issue of supernatural courts, that may be

:25:15.:25:19.

beyond democratic control as well. There are genuine grounds for

:25:20.:25:24.

concern. By the impact assessment said that nearly 1 million jobs

:25:25.:25:28.

would be lost in the EU if TTIP was signed. We have seen jobs lost as a

:25:29.:25:34.

result of trade deals in America. As regards workers rights, I think it

:25:35.:25:38.

is very defeatist to say that we cannot fight for those regulations

:25:39.:25:41.

in British law. I think we should be fighting for them in British law and

:25:42.:25:45.

I do not think we should trust and institution which is not accountable

:25:46.:25:48.

to us to protect us. We have to move on.

:25:49.:25:52.

In the general election last year, the Liberal Democrats went

:25:53.:25:54.

from being a party of government to the fourth largest party

:25:55.:25:57.

Nick Clegg promptly resigned, with the current leader Tim Farron

:25:58.:26:01.

With local, national and mayoral elections coming up

:26:02.:26:04.

across the country, Mr Farron will be hoping his leadership

:26:05.:26:07.

is cutting through with the public and that the elections in May

:26:08.:26:10.

will mark the start of a Lib Dem revival.

:26:11.:26:17.

In a moment, we'll talk to the party's London mayoral

:26:18.:26:20.

candidate as the party gathers for its spring conference.

:26:21.:26:22.

First though, here's a reminder of Tim's first nine

:26:23.:26:24.

Our keyboard player rang me up a couple

:26:25.:26:34.

of weeks ago and he said, Tim, we should reform,

:26:35.:26:37.

# I'm just mad about Saffron, she's just mad about me.

:26:38.:26:41.

# They call me mellow yellow. yellow, quite rightly.

:26:42.:26:53.

We now know that coming third is as good as winning.

:26:54.:27:00.

What do you think about the European response so far?

:27:01.:27:06.

And we've been joined by the Lib Dem's candidate

:27:07.:27:22.

Good afternoon. Do you worry that people have stopped taking any

:27:23.:27:32.

notice of your party. I think people are gradually starting to listen to

:27:33.:27:36.

the party again. Over the last year we have seen an increase of 5% in

:27:37.:27:40.

our vote in by-elections across the country and in London we have

:27:41.:27:43.

started to win by-elections including one in Twickenham last

:27:44.:27:47.

year, an area we have never held even when Vince Cable was the MP.

:27:48.:27:50.

People have the confidence to vote for us now and they are starting to

:27:51.:27:56.

listen to what we are saying. As John Major will tell you,

:27:57.:27:58.

performances in by-elections do not tell you how you will do in the

:27:59.:28:02.

general election. Look at the national polls since February. 5%,

:28:03.:28:10.

8%, 6%, 7%, Scottish votes, 5%, 4%. The Welsh votes, 5%. A London

:28:11.:28:17.

mayoral poll, 3%. When I started in the party, we were within the margin

:28:18.:28:20.

of error, so we are certainly ahead of that. We are starting to see our

:28:21.:28:26.

base grow across the country. What is important is that we have seen a

:28:27.:28:31.

growth in membership, tens of thousands of new members, very

:28:32.:28:34.

enthusiastic, and keen to campaign. With an issue like the European

:28:35.:28:39.

referendum coming up, that is key to voting. It is encouraging lots of

:28:40.:28:42.

our members to go out and complain. But even with that you are divided.

:28:43.:28:49.

A former MP is a new vote, liberal leave. -- go out and campaign. We

:28:50.:28:54.

will see at the Spring conference. Members around London are very pro

:28:55.:28:58.

European. Across London, out and in the debates, the field is very wide

:28:59.:29:03.

open. The people out there like what we are saying and they like our

:29:04.:29:07.

ideas. What would be, you have the Scottish Parliament, the Welsh

:29:08.:29:10.

Assembly, the English local elections, the London mayoral, what

:29:11.:29:16.

would be a good result for you? I will not predict results. It is up

:29:17.:29:21.

to the electorate. I was not asking you to predict, I was asking, what

:29:22.:29:25.

would you regard, if you achieved it, as evidence of your claim that

:29:26.:29:29.

you are on the way back? I would like to see our vote go up clearly

:29:30.:29:32.

and I would like to see us with elected members of the Welsh

:29:33.:29:37.

Assembly, and the London assembly, and winning seats across the country

:29:38.:29:40.

in council elections. I am not going to pretend that our party will grow

:29:41.:29:44.

overnight to be a big party of government. It will take time but we

:29:45.:29:48.

are seeing the signs that we are moving in the right direction. Is it

:29:49.:29:51.

a generational struggle? It might be. It might be five

:29:52.:29:58.

-- it might be fives portends a dramatic years but people are

:29:59.:30:03.

wanting to hear what we have to say. Particularly when you have a Labour

:30:04.:30:07.

Party slipping to the left and the Conservative party going to the

:30:08.:30:11.

right there is open and central ground, and people are willing to

:30:12.:30:14.

listen to us and that is what I am finding on the doorsteps in London.

:30:15.:30:18.

Who should your voters give their second preferences to in London? My

:30:19.:30:24.

job is not to promote the other candidates, I am after Lib Dem votes

:30:25.:30:28.

for the mayor of London and for the London assembly. If people like what

:30:29.:30:33.

we are saying, I want a vote on the orange ballot paper to get Lib Dems

:30:34.:30:37.

elected. But if you only get what the polls predict, you will only end

:30:38.:30:43.

up with about 3% in London, a famously liberal, multicultural

:30:44.:30:48.

city, then that would be a bit of a blow for the Lib Dems, wouldn't it?

:30:49.:30:53.

We have some way to go. We got below 5% in the last election so we have

:30:54.:30:57.

to grow in London. I have to say, the feedback when I am out in

:30:58.:31:04.

London, the feedback to having a female candidate with eight years

:31:05.:31:07.

experience in City Hall, able to discuss issues and come up with

:31:08.:31:12.

solutions, we are hoping to get a good result in May.

:31:13.:31:18.

With the Spring conference, it has been 300 days in the wilderness now,

:31:19.:31:26.

what will be the big idea? The party will be debating policy, one member,

:31:27.:31:31.

one bird, everybody has got something to say. That is the

:31:32.:31:35.

process. I have got a private renter's motion making sure that

:31:36.:31:42.

people get protection in terms of landlords, having to register them,

:31:43.:31:46.

so they are proper and meeting all the standards, and making sure we

:31:47.:31:51.

get rid of rib of letting these, those other sorts of discussions we

:31:52.:31:55.

will be having. How do you assess the Lib Dems 300 days on the

:31:56.:32:01.

disaster? Caroline is a valiant fight and I wish her luck. The

:32:02.:32:06.

problem for the Lib Dems is that so much depends on what the other

:32:07.:32:11.

parties are doing. As we saw in a seat like Twickenham with Vince

:32:12.:32:15.

cable, people will not vote Lib Dem if they worry about the Labour

:32:16.:32:19.

leader getting into Downing Street. Until that changes and until there

:32:20.:32:23.

is another political poll on the left that does not frighten voters,

:32:24.:32:28.

Lib Dems will have trouble breaking through in any major way. That is

:32:29.:32:33.

something over which they have not got control. But they have to keep

:32:34.:32:37.

plugging away and I am pleased there is a female candidate for the Lib

:32:38.:32:46.

Dems. Not the first one. What advice have you got for the Lib Dems? The

:32:47.:32:52.

morning Star makes the Lib Dems Ludwig. I think that Harold Wilson

:32:53.:33:01.

said if you stay in the middle of the road, you get run over. Because

:33:02.:33:07.

the economy is failing people who are worried about their jobs and

:33:08.:33:11.

futures, we are seeing a political polarisation in this country and the

:33:12.:33:16.

US with Donald Trump and so on. I think the idea Labour is going left

:33:17.:33:20.

and the Tories are going right is not a celebration for the Liberal

:33:21.:33:26.

Democrats. No, it is not. The voters are demanding radical solutions.

:33:27.:33:32.

People were enthusiastic about the Lib Dems in the 2010 election. Thank

:33:33.:33:39.

you for being with us, we will see you during the mayoral campaign.

:33:40.:33:41.

It's time now to find out the answer to our quiz.

:33:42.:33:45.

The question was, President Obama has criticised David Cameron

:33:46.:33:47.

for becoming distracted and allowing what to deteriorate?

:33:48.:33:49.

Was it the Special Relationship, the situation in Libya,

:33:50.:33:51.

British relations with the rest of the EU,

:33:52.:33:53.

So, Miranda and Ben, what's the correct answer?

:33:54.:34:01.

Libya. Libya. That is the correct answer. I saw some of the diplomatic

:34:02.:34:11.

Corps trying to play this down, but they are quite remarkable, is by the

:34:12.:34:17.

President. They really are, particularly the ones with asterisks

:34:18.:34:23.

in. Was he swearing? Yes, he was, although I do not know if there are

:34:24.:34:32.

quoted. It is the Atlantic magazine. What has happened in Libya since the

:34:33.:34:36.

fall of Gaddafi has been a total catastrophe. It is yet another

:34:37.:34:43.

example of the intervention were toppling the dictator works, but

:34:44.:34:47.

afterwards there is no plan of substance. We will have to leave it

:34:48.:34:48.

Coming up in a moment it's our regular look at what's been

:34:49.:34:54.

For now it's time to say goodbye to my two guests of the day,

:34:55.:34:59.

So for the next half an hour we're going to be focussing on Europe.

:35:00.:35:04.

We'll be discussing the migrant crisis, David Cameron's EU reform

:35:05.:35:06.

First though here's our guide to the latest from Europe

:35:07.:35:10.

On Monday the EU and Turkey agreed a plan to ease the migrant crisis.

:35:11.:35:17.

All migrants arriving in Greece from Turkey will be returned,

:35:18.:35:22.

but for every Syrian sent back a Syrian already in Turkey will be

:35:23.:35:25.

The European Commission warned France and Italy that their economic

:35:26.:35:31.

weaknesses risked destabilising the other economies

:35:32.:35:34.

EU states want to tax e-cigarettes in the same way as their tobacco

:35:35.:35:41.

counterpart, but the vaping lobby says it punishes

:35:42.:35:44.

Leaders of the Conservative Party's group in the European Parliament

:35:45.:35:51.

asked members of the German anti-immigration AFD to leave

:35:52.:35:54.

the group after comments made about using guns against immigrants.

:35:55.:36:01.

And a limousine service for the European Parliament

:36:02.:36:05.

is in doubt after MEPs questioned the 3 million euros cost.

:36:06.:36:09.

Drivers' uniforms alone add up to 116,000 euros a year.

:36:10.:36:21.

And with us for the next thirty minutes I've been joined

:36:22.:36:24.

by the Conservative MEP Charles Tannock, and the SNP MEP

:36:25.:36:26.

Let's take a look at one of those stories in more detail,

:36:27.:36:31.

the idea of a new car service to transport MEPs around

:36:32.:36:33.

Looking forward to be chauffeur driven in the back of a limousine?

:36:34.:36:46.

These are proposals and there is an existing car service and there are a

:36:47.:36:51.

lot of MEP is going back and forth to the airport, so the Parliament

:36:52.:36:55.

has a fleet of minibuses and there is a security question there as

:36:56.:37:00.

well. But these are proposals and they have been shelved and we will

:37:01.:37:06.

vote against them. It will not happen? I do not think so. It will

:37:07.:37:10.

only happen if the European Parliament agrees to it? The

:37:11.:37:16.

proposal was reported in every single newspaper. The fact it has

:37:17.:37:20.

not been shelved has not been mentioned at all. It has now. The

:37:21.:37:27.

security a concern? Nobody knows who you are. No, it is the security of

:37:28.:37:31.

the drivers who are not vetted properly. They wanted to bring their

:37:32.:37:38.

employment in house so they could be fully screened. That would make

:37:39.:37:44.

sense. But the costs are too high and the Conservatives will be

:37:45.:37:47.

submitting an amendment, so I think it is highly unlikely it will go

:37:48.:37:53.

through. So we can kill it now dead. Hopefully dead. You hear all the

:37:54.:38:02.

news here. All the big stuff. You can use the cards. You could not

:38:03.:38:07.

wait to get that point in, they are not here to defend themselves.

:38:08.:38:10.

Angela Merkel has proposed deal to Under the plan, Turkey would take

:38:11.:38:18.

back migrants crossing In return the EU would resettle

:38:19.:38:25.

Syrian refugees directly from Turkey, pay Turkey around

:38:26.:38:30.

6 billion euros and agree to visa-free travel for Turkish

:38:31.:38:33.

citizens in the Schengen Mrs Merkel didn't include

:38:34.:38:35.

the president of the European Council, Donald Tusk but he's

:38:36.:38:39.

going along with it nevertheless. The Prime Minister confirmed

:38:40.:38:43.

Turkey's commitments to accept the rapid return of

:38:44.:38:46.

all migrants coming from Turkey to Greece that are not

:38:47.:38:48.

in need of international protection. The EU will support Greece

:38:49.:38:52.

in ensuring comprehensive, large-scale and fast

:38:53.:38:56.

track returns to Turkey. We also welcome the establishment

:38:57.:39:02.

of the Nato activity in the Aegean Sea and

:39:03.:39:04.

we look forward to its contribution to enhance intelligence

:39:05.:39:07.

and surveillance with a view And we've been joined

:39:08.:39:13.

by the UKIP MEP Diane James. What do you make of this deal? There

:39:14.:39:30.

is never going to be a good deal because it is a humanitarian crisis.

:39:31.:39:34.

On the one hand we are worried about what is going on in Turkey. This

:39:35.:39:39.

week a man was shot, said the government is doing a lot of stuff

:39:40.:39:44.

we are vocal about criticising. On the other hand, Turkey has been a

:39:45.:39:49.

key partner in hosting 2.6 million refugees and they need support for

:39:50.:39:54.

that. On the migration question, our priority has to be to keep people

:39:55.:39:59.

safe. We can keep them safe in our country or in Turkey by supporting

:40:00.:40:04.

the Turks to do that. We are finally seeing some progress towards a

:40:05.:40:09.

political solution in Syria which. People being refugees. That could be

:40:10.:40:14.

a long way down the road. Dealing with Syrian refugees trying to get

:40:15.:40:22.

into Turkey now. What do you think? Turkey has the upper hand and it

:40:23.:40:26.

controls the flow of migrants leaving its territory crossing into

:40:27.:40:29.

Greece and we have to do a deal with Turkey, irrespective of the nature

:40:30.:40:33.

of the current government and I am a critic of President Erdogan in terms

:40:34.:40:38.

of repression and arresting journalists. We are going to give 6

:40:39.:40:44.

billion euros to an authoritarian president? We have no choice because

:40:45.:40:49.

people are choosing that route to the Balkans and it is only by Turkey

:40:50.:40:54.

stabilising the refugees that we can stop the large flow into Europe.

:40:55.:40:59.

What makes you think the Turkish people will not just pocket the six

:41:00.:41:04.

billion and nothing will happen. There is a risk and it has to be

:41:05.:41:09.

closely monitored. If that was the case, it would be immediately

:41:10.:41:13.

suspended as a deal. At the moment Turkey is demanding a heavy price,

:41:14.:41:19.

these liberalisation, the lifting on the blockage for negotiating EU

:41:20.:41:24.

accession, that is pretty controversial. I understand, but it

:41:25.:41:28.

looks like Angela Merkel wants the European Union to do it. What is

:41:29.:41:34.

your view? It is typical German bullying which we are used to end

:41:35.:41:40.

the Parliament. Mr Schultz made the point that the EU needs Turkey and

:41:41.:41:44.

the Turkey needs the EU and you could not have a clearer message if

:41:45.:41:48.

you wanted it. This will fast-track Turkey in terms of accession into

:41:49.:41:53.

the EU, which all of the political parties except Ukip have supported,

:41:54.:41:58.

and David Cameron in particular are supported Turkey's membership. It is

:41:59.:42:05.

unclear when they will get it. In terms of their time frame what I

:42:06.:42:09.

have picked up this week is it has gone from a 10-year time frame to a

:42:10.:42:13.

time frame within this five-year Parliament. That is nonsense. I am a

:42:14.:42:23.

wrap on Turner dashed raconteur for Montenegro and it poses no problem

:42:24.:42:26.

for entering the European Union and it will not enter the European

:42:27.:42:32.

Union. Turkey entering in five years is nonsense. It is subject to each

:42:33.:42:40.

member state's National Parliament ratifying the access them, so our

:42:41.:42:43.

sovereign in the House of Commond would have to say yes and it would

:42:44.:42:47.

require the British Government and parliament to agree to it. Angela

:42:48.:42:52.

Merkel did not consult David Cameron over the deal she put on the table

:42:53.:42:55.

this week and this is the second time she has done this in terms of

:42:56.:43:02.

28 member states. There is another summit which will sign it off and we

:43:03.:43:06.

will be able to have our say on it as well. One of the key issues,

:43:07.:43:12.

which has not come up yet, if this is Angela Merkel trying to satisfy

:43:13.:43:17.

domestic agenda well. This is for the Schengen zone. Why should David

:43:18.:43:26.

Cameron...? The agreement said it apply to all members. That was

:43:27.:43:31.

clearly wrong. There is a part I do not understand. The proposed deal,

:43:32.:43:37.

the Angela Merkel proposal at the moment, is that those Syrians and

:43:38.:43:41.

other refugees or asylum seekers are economic migrants who have made it

:43:42.:43:46.

to Greece will be returned to Turkey and then the Syrians will be picked

:43:47.:43:51.

out, processed and bit by bit they will be sent back in a more

:43:52.:43:56.

legitimate way. How in a democracy like Greece to you forcibly return

:43:57.:44:03.

migrants? That is where there are legal questions about this proposal.

:44:04.:44:07.

The idea that you can throw people back to what may not be a country.

:44:08.:44:13.

Which is an equal signatory to the Geneva Convention. The UNHCR

:44:14.:44:21.

representative expressed his doubts on the proposals. The support Turkey

:44:22.:44:29.

will get to provide a safe haven we have our doubts over that. I am not

:44:30.:44:35.

just talking about the legality, I am talking about the practicality of

:44:36.:44:41.

a situation. We have got pictures they are of migrants in camps. Are

:44:42.:44:47.

we seriously going to do it? Who will do it? Will the Greek police

:44:48.:44:52.

moved in with guns? The European Union will be providing a additional

:44:53.:45:04.

help, for example Europol. These people have risked their lives to

:45:05.:45:08.

get out of Turkey and into Greece. If you are not Syrian, you have no

:45:09.:45:13.

hope of getting back. You get sent to Turkey. Why would they say, we

:45:14.:45:20.

are not moving? Returning migrants is a challenging task, but that has

:45:21.:45:25.

been agreed and it will be up to the authorities to implement this. Are

:45:26.:45:29.

we going to see the European Union round-up refugees and force them

:45:30.:45:35.

onto boats in their thousands? Is that your proposition? I am only

:45:36.:45:38.

saying what I read in the agreement in which it has been stated

:45:39.:45:44.

categorically that people who are illegal and irregular who come from

:45:45.:45:49.

countries other than Syria like Afghanistan and Eritrea, and they

:45:50.:45:53.

have come from camps where they were established with asylum pleased that

:45:54.:45:57.

had already been accepted, that they have no right to automatically be

:45:58.:46:03.

granted territorial rights in the European Union and they have to go

:46:04.:46:07.

back. How they implement that I do not know, that is up to them.

:46:08.:46:14.

In a referendum campaign. It does, there is no doubt in my mind.

:46:15.:46:20.

Neither of my counterparts had even urged upon the bill to the United

:46:21.:46:25.

Kingdom, ?500 million. Not a huge amount of the UK budget. What would

:46:26.:46:30.

your solution be? We're running out of time and there are two of you and

:46:31.:46:35.

one of her. I will give you the last work. -- I will give you the last

:46:36.:46:40.

word. It helps the Brexit campaign and the Eurosceptic movement across

:46:41.:46:44.

Europe. We have seen responses to that already. The point you made was

:46:45.:46:48.

critical. How on earth is this going to be enforceable? This is going to

:46:49.:46:52.

be a migration merry-go-round, bringing people in, sending them

:46:53.:46:56.

back, and who will marshal it and make it happen? It is the usual EU

:46:57.:47:02.

nonsense. Well, give us a solution. That'll have to wait for another

:47:03.:47:04.

programme. You. We've seen plenty of fall-out

:47:05.:47:05.

in Britain since David Cameron But what about the people

:47:06.:47:08.

who will get to vote on it? No, not the British public,

:47:09.:47:13.

the MEPs in the European Parliament who will be able to amend

:47:14.:47:16.

the proposals and vote on the plan. It is the first time MEPs have met

:47:17.:47:19.

here in Strasbourg since EU leaders rustled up David Cameron's

:47:20.:47:34.

referendum hors d'oeuvre, They signed it off but could MEPs

:47:35.:47:36.

rip the deal to bits I don't think that MEPs will change

:47:37.:47:40.

it because they understand Would you imagine the Commons not

:47:41.:47:44.

having a say on legislation We are in charge of making

:47:45.:47:47.

legislation for the EU So is the stage set

:47:48.:47:51.

for a European Parliament showdown And there is a weariness among MEPs

:47:52.:47:56.

about the British question, They want the show to be over,

:47:57.:48:03.

one way or another. Lots of the deal that David Cameron

:48:04.:48:09.

agreed with EU leaders does not need In particular, the plan to curb

:48:10.:48:13.

in work benefits that workers So, too, the idea of linking child

:48:14.:48:23.

benefit payments to EU citizens in the UK to the cost

:48:24.:48:29.

of living in the country The president of the European

:48:30.:48:31.

Parliament didn't rule out the possibility of changes

:48:32.:48:35.

when the plans are produced. Our road starts when a Yes

:48:36.:48:39.

vote has a majority. Then the European Parliament

:48:40.:48:49.

will start immediately This is a question of the draft

:48:50.:48:50.

proposal of the commission. It is much too early

:48:51.:48:55.

to answer that question. But he is careful not to say

:48:56.:48:57.

anything that could fuel Like most MEPs, he wants

:48:58.:49:00.

the UK to remain in, This parliament can substantially

:49:01.:49:03.

water down and will substantially water down any changes to benefits

:49:04.:49:09.

that the UK pays to people And other MEPs second his view that

:49:10.:49:12.

benefit changes are not signed off. The UK decided not to change

:49:13.:49:19.

its own rules on in-work This is one of the main

:49:20.:49:21.

ambiguities of the settlement. And I am not happy for the British

:49:22.:49:29.

people because we have to be fair. When people are going to vote

:49:30.:49:36.

in the referendum, the conditions But Madame Goulard,

:49:37.:49:38.

an enthusiastic Federalist, looks set to be outnumbered by MEPs

:49:39.:49:44.

who think the best thing to do There is a positive attitude

:49:45.:49:51.

in the house on this emergency brake We have to solve the British issue

:49:52.:49:56.

once and for all because we cannot continue with decades

:49:57.:50:02.

and decades of discussion. I asked a Conservative MEP if she

:50:03.:50:14.

could guarantee the deal being sold to UK voters could be delivered.

:50:15.:50:18.

I am getting MEPs saying, what can I do to help?

:50:19.:50:21.

I am number checking and listening to what they are saying.

:50:22.:50:24.

We don't need Le Pen or Nigel Farage's vote.

:50:25.:50:26.

We need 376 votes in that parliament and the vast majority of the MEPs

:50:27.:50:29.

are saying we want to keep the Brits in, they do not want to rock

:50:30.:50:33.

And it seems that while many MEPs are tired of what they view

:50:34.:50:40.

as British special pleading, they do not want the UK heading

:50:41.:50:43.

Is it possible that we could vote to remain at the European Parliament

:50:44.:50:56.

could then change elements of the deal that Mr Cameron has done? No.

:50:57.:51:06.

Because? It is flat nonsense. There are agreements among the member

:51:07.:51:09.

states that the deal was necessary. But there is no desire among anybody

:51:10.:51:14.

serious. Even from my own party's perspective, this is not the deal we

:51:15.:51:17.

thought was necessary but if it is the price of continued membership

:51:18.:51:22.

for Scotland, we can live with it and it is workable. The MEPs will be

:51:23.:51:26.

pragmatic about this stuff. It is right that the European Parliament

:51:27.:51:29.

has a say on this because there are implications for the wider community

:51:30.:51:32.

but it is going to go through and it will not be changed. It is a red

:51:33.:51:37.

herring. Nigel Farage was trying a bit of project fear there? He is not

:51:38.:51:46.

alone these days. My colleague Vicky Ford was spot on. There is no doubt

:51:47.:51:55.

that the PPP or VCR, my group, more than half of the Socialists as well,

:51:56.:52:04.

that is an in-built majority -- Cammack. It will be interesting to

:52:05.:52:08.

see if Ukip tries to sabotage it after the vote against national

:52:09.:52:12.

interest. I'm not a member of the extreme right and do not appreciate

:52:13.:52:18.

that. I don't doubt that the vast majority of MEPs will vote to keep

:52:19.:52:22.

this in. The reason they will do that is that we contribute so much

:52:23.:52:27.

in terms of the budget contribution to the European Union and they

:52:28.:52:31.

cannot afford to let the UK walk away. But when it comes down to it,

:52:32.:52:34.

ultimately whatever decision the MEPs, with, it is voters in the

:52:35.:52:40.

United Kingdom who have already seen what is on the table and they have

:52:41.:52:44.

voiced their concerns. It is why the polls are running as close as they

:52:45.:52:48.

are. I understand that and we will have plenty of time to talk more

:52:49.:52:52.

about that between now and June 23, but what I was trying to zoom in on

:52:53.:52:56.

at the moment, although constitutionally it would be

:52:57.:53:00.

possible that the European Parliament could make changes or

:53:01.:53:04.

knock down some of it, in practice, given the majorities, it is not

:53:05.:53:08.

going to happen. So in their words, in practical terms it is a red

:53:09.:53:14.

herring? I would say so, yes. Thank you for agreeing. We appreciate the

:53:15.:53:21.

Ukip support. I will not be putting it through. Speaking personally, I

:53:22.:53:26.

think it is up a deal that David Cameron has brought back. It -- it

:53:27.:53:31.

is a poor deal and that David Cameron has brought back. It suits

:53:32.:53:33.

Europhile MEPs. It's the most easterly member

:53:34.:53:35.

of the European Union, half an island to the south

:53:36.:53:39.

of Turkey in the Mediterranean Sea. For the latest in our series

:53:40.:53:43.

of films profiling other EU member states, Adam Fleming

:53:44.:53:46.

reports from Cyprus. Nicosia is Europe's

:53:47.:53:58.

last divided capital. On the other, with a massive flag

:53:59.:54:03.

on the hill, the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus which

:54:04.:54:09.

is just a short border There you go, a quick swipe

:54:10.:54:11.

of the passport and I come across the border

:54:12.:54:20.

into northern Cyprus. It is not exactly

:54:21.:54:21.

Deutschland '83, is it? Each side feels pretty distinctive

:54:22.:54:24.

and there are signs of the division all along what is known

:54:25.:54:28.

as the Green Line. It has mostly been like this

:54:29.:54:36.

since 1974 when Turkey invaded the island, fearing

:54:37.:54:41.

it would be united with Greece, which was led

:54:42.:54:43.

by a military junta at the time. Nowadays both sides are separated

:54:44.:54:51.

by this slightly spooky buffer zone where you will find

:54:52.:54:53.

Nicosia's abandoned airport. The buffer zone is policed

:54:54.:54:56.

by United Nations peacekeepers, like Major Robert

:54:57.:54:58.

Saxon from Slovakia. To your friends back home

:54:59.:55:01.

in Slovakia who say what on earth are you doing in Cyprus,

:55:02.:55:04.

what do you tell them? When you are deployed

:55:05.:55:09.

here then you try to find out, or you have a chance to find

:55:10.:55:12.

out, how deep is this Then you can understand how

:55:13.:55:15.

important is the presence It does not matter if they are from

:55:16.:55:20.

Slovakia or other states, but we really need to be

:55:21.:55:26.

here and just keep this stable environment here

:55:27.:55:29.

until there is a final And unlike this old plane,

:55:30.:55:33.

the peace process finally The leaders of both communities meet

:55:34.:55:38.

every other week and officials negotiate three times a week,

:55:39.:55:43.

but negotiate over what? The governments and the way

:55:44.:55:49.

the executive, the legislature, the judiciary, will be

:55:50.:55:51.

functioning in this new system How are we going to take decisions

:55:52.:55:53.

within the European Union? How are we going to transpose

:55:54.:56:09.

EU law into a united Then there is the economy

:56:10.:56:12.

chapter which means how are we going to regulate

:56:13.:56:15.

the taxation and the revenues? How will that be

:56:16.:56:19.

redistributed to the entire Then we have the issue

:56:20.:56:20.

of properties, a very complicated After the events of 1974,

:56:21.:56:26.

many Turkish Cypriots who used to live in the south

:56:27.:56:32.

moved to the north and the Greek Cypriots who used

:56:33.:56:34.

to live in the north moved to the south leaving

:56:35.:56:37.

behind their properties. And now the remaining

:56:38.:56:40.

chapters that have not yet been touched

:56:41.:56:43.

is the territorial issue. Where exactly is the border

:56:44.:56:48.

between North and South and what happens to the thousands

:56:49.:56:53.

of Turkish troops stationed But everyone involved reckons

:56:54.:56:56.

there will be a deal by the end of this year which would then go

:56:57.:57:02.

to a referendum on both sides After more than 40 years Nicosia

:57:03.:57:05.

might not be divided Cyprus now has more resonance with

:57:06.:57:24.

all the talk of Turkey. Absolutely. Cyprus is a Commonwealth country,

:57:25.:57:28.

and it has the sovereign basis, so it is a very important country form

:57:29.:57:35.

a British perspective. And they feel particularly squeezed over the

:57:36.:57:39.

turkey deal because there is pressure from the Gannon for Cyprus

:57:40.:57:45.

to lift its veto, because Turkey has never implemented the 2005 protocols

:57:46.:57:52.

which recognise Cyprus. -- pressure from Erdogan. I feel particularly

:57:53.:57:57.

sorry for the president who has two sell a package on the unification

:57:58.:58:00.

deal at the same time as having to cooperate over the migrant question

:58:01.:58:07.

with Europe. They should be decoupled, and not linked by Mr

:58:08.:58:11.

Erdogan. It will be interesting to see what we do with the economic

:58:12.:58:14.

migrants and refugees, asylum seekers stranded on the sovereign

:58:15.:58:19.

basis. Is that going to be part of the discussion? It goes back to the

:58:20.:58:24.

heart of the deal that Turkey struck with the EU this week. What happens

:58:25.:58:28.

there? A final thought in ten seconds? The island of Cyprus, for

:58:29.:58:34.

it to be reunited would be a glorious project and I think the EU

:58:35.:58:37.

can get a result and we will see progress. I have met with both sides

:58:38.:58:41.

a number of times and I think there is an impetus to get a deal done. It

:58:42.:58:49.

will take a wider profile of things. A good piece of good news for 2016.

:58:50.:58:53.

We could do with some good news. Next to all of my guests. That is it

:58:54.:59:00.

for Politics Europe. We hope to see you soon. Bye-bye.

:59:01.:59:10.

You and I, we're going to change this country.

:59:11.:59:14.

You run and, hopefully, win elected office.

:59:15.:59:18.

Not just for the sake of being something

:59:19.:59:21.

I knew that seven presidents had tried, seven presidents had failed.

:59:22.:59:26.

He said, "I am President of the United States

:59:27.:59:30.

Andrew Neil is joined by journalists Miranda Green and Ben Chacko to discuss the EU referendum and Labour's economic plans. Plus, an interview with Caroline Pidgeon, Liberal Democrat candidate for London mayor, and a look at the latest news from Europe.


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