14/03/2016 Daily Politics


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Hello and welcome to the Daily Politics.


36 people are killed in a bomb attack in the Turkish capital


Is the country in any position to help solve the EU migrant crisis?


What's the relationship between the Labour's candidate


for Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, and Babar Ahmad?


The so-called cyber-jihadist speaks about their relationship


Why Tories who voted to remain in 1975 are campaigning to leave,


and Labour leavers in '75 are now for remain.


And I ask Boris Johnson what his chances are


You had a greater chance of being reincarnated as an olive...


You remember, than you did about being


Or a baked bean, or decapitated by Frisbee or locked


And with us for the duration today, a former Europe Minister,


And the Conservative MP, Graham Brady, who was once


First this morning, 36 people have been killed in a suicide car bomb


attack in the Turkish capital, Ankara.


The bomb went off last night outside the main railway station


The Turkish government are already pointing the finger at the outlawed


One of the dead is said to be a known PKK militant.


Last month, a bomb attack on a military convoy in Ankara


killed 28 people and wounded dozens more, and in October more than 100


people were killed at a peace rally in the city.


Caroline Flint, how dangerous this unrest in Turkey for the rest of us?


It is obviously very concerning pickers as well as these attacks we


know that Turkey is obviously dealing with millions of refugees


coming through their borders as well. And what is so sad for Turkey,


too, and I've holidayed there many times, in fact I was there last


summer, is the huge impact these things have not just in terms of a


loss for the people involved are also on Turkey's economy. But the


problem for Turkey and in some ways then relying on Turkey to stop the


migrant crisis is that they are fighting a war on two fronts. They


are still fighting an old and ongoing battle with the PKK and they


are also part of this coalition to fight IS, are they really in a


position to help us fight the migrant crisis? We have to depend on


a working Turkey. Turkey is a critically important power in the


region. In terms of helping with what is going on in Syria and other


parts, but also our front line on the migrant crisis. Should we be


relying on them and is this deal going to stick? The deal is another


matter and I don't think the deal is going to make much difference. The


fact is with one in, one outcome you do not discourage people from coming


you are just providing a different dynamic in that same traffic. We


don't really have an alternative, do we? We do have to work with Turkey


because they are dealing with millions of refugees. Not only in


terms of within Turkey but also the problem of traffickers taking people


out of Turkey and into Greece as well. It is absolutely right that


the government and other EU nations should be having this discussion.


What the final deal will look like is yet to be negotiated. Do you


think it will be done on Thursday? I don't know whether it will be done


on Thursday but it will not be resolved, the problem will not be


resolved until the EU recognises that free movement of people cannot


underpin relationships between 28 countries across the continent of


Europe. Realistically that's over anyway, freedom of movement for a


lot of countries. Are you supporting the idea it should go altogether? A


lot of European politicians say it is core to what they believe in. If


people recognised it was over we might have a more meaningful


negotiations. Is that the solution, to actually state officially that


freedom of movement of people is over, as people have been erecting


fences and walls to try to stop migrants coming through? Free


movement does not mean a free for all, there are limitations on who


can come into different parts of the EU and we are part of, we are not


part of the Shannon zone so we will not be changing it any time soon.


There is a recognition that the external borders of the EU need to


be stronger than they are, and clearly what Angela Merkel said


which is a sister party to Graham's in the last few months hasn't helped


the situation and she is paying the price in the polls. Done very badly


in those elections that have just happened. David Cameron said in 2014


that he still would like Turkey to join the EU. Do you think he still


feels like that? I don't know, but Britain has always been a strong


supporter of the idea of Turkey joining the EU. I always used to say


when I was shadowing Europe that can never happen until we have a very


different kind of European Union, one that had updated concepts on


open borders and so on. Let's hear what George Osborne had to say on


this subject yesterday. We have a veto over


whether Turkey joins or not. We have set conditions and we have


made it absolutely clear that we will not accept new member


states to the European Union and give them unfettered


free movement of people unless their economies


are much closer in size So Britain would block


Turkish accession? We are absolutely clear that


while countries might or might not accede, we have to make that


decision at the time, they would only have free movement


of people if the economies Is he right at the moment? Should it


be something that would be put on hold? Would you want to see a veto


exercised if, in talks on accession, the deal was that Turkey could


quicken up its chances to become a member of the EU? That is part of


Turkey's negotiation gambit in all this. To be honest I don't think


there is any sign any time soon that Turkey will be part of the EU. As a


country that wants to be it already has certain rights to trade and work


with us but those rights are based on what we expect them to do. Apart


from a whole number of other things, the other week we saw that a


newspaper was shut down in Turkey. Beyond the economic side of things,


part of being part of the EU is about freedom of speech, a free


press and other things as well. Not just about Turkey but any country, I


would say it has never been harder to become a member of the EU. If


some of the tests were applied to day were applied before, there may


be fewer countries in the EU. But Visa free travel for text has been


discussed because there has to be a quid pro quo, and you can understand


why Turkey would drive a hard bargain, they are the ones on the


front line. Is it a price worth paying in order to get Turkey to


deal with, to some extent, the flow of Syrian refugees and migrants? It


doesn't work, Britain couldn't deliver it, neither could the French


or Germans. We have seen how the German electorate are responding to


the open borders policy Angela Merkel has had. It is something


people on the continent of Europe have had enough of. People expect


countries to restore control of the borders and to control the flows of


migrants. Fundamentally it is not possible to do that while you are in


the EU. We will come onto the EU in just a moment.


Who or what did George Osborne ask to "keep it down"


while he was writing his Budget in the House of Commons yesterday?


Was it a) noisy protesters, b) squeaky House of Commons mice,


or d) Top Gear, who were filming outside?


At the end of the show, Caroline and Graham will give us


Now, there have lots of questions in the media in recent weeks


about the relationship between Labour's candidate


for London Mayor, Sadiq Khan, and Babar Ahmad, the man known


In an exclusive interview for the Victoria Derbyshire


programme, Ahmad has talked for the first time about the nature


In 2014, a US court sentenced Babar to 12.5 years in prison


after admitting supporting terrorism.


He and others ran an influential online operation, Azzam.com,


propagating armed jihadist ideology from the late 1990s,


Babar had spent 10 years in a British jail fighting


During this time, Sadiq Khan met Mr Ahmad in jail and took


The Labour MP for Tooting says he did this is his role


as a constituency MP but acknowledges that he and Babar Ahmad


In today's interview, Ahmad says he was "naive" to show


support for the Taliban and had this to say about his relationship


Sadiq Khan, he gave the same level of support to me that Zac Goldsmith


and Boris Johnson said, which is basically that as a British


citizen accused of crimes committed in this country,


Was he visiting you as a friend, or a constituency MP?


He was visiting me as a constituency MP.


My family, and lots of people here in Tooting, they told him


to come and visit me and he just came to visit me and see how I was.


In my community, anyone who is not your enemy


is a friend so in that sense, he is my friend.


But I've never socialised with him or gone out to eat with him,


He is probably an acquaintance more than a friend.


How close were you before you were arrested in December 2003?


I mean, Tooting is a small community.


I remember every Saturday, he used to be standing at a stall


for the Labour Party on Tooting High Street.


If I saw him, I would go up to him and shake his hand.


He is just someone that I knew, walking on the streets.


In an interview in the last few days, Sadiq Khan said about you,


"We were not close friends but we knew each other growing up".


Have you met him since you arrived back in Britain in the last few


Yes, I was travelling home one night on the tube with my lawyer


and I bumped into him and shook his hand.


You can watch the whole of that interview on the Victoria Derbyshire


We asked for an interview with Sadiq Khan or one of his team,


But we're joined now by Davis Lewin from the Foreign Policy Think Tank,


What is your specific accusation against Sadiq Khan Chris Green we


have to look at there is a matter of grave national


security here with Babar Ahmad, many of whose assertions are open to


significant challenge in terms of the interview he has given. No


politician should have a relationship with a man such as


this, certainly not campaigning for him in that way. I think there are


some specific pieces that I question when it comes to Sadiq Khan and his


past activities with Mr Ahmad. I think the most obvious one is the


Rose report in which it is abundantly clear that Mr Khan had


been registered to visit Mr Ahmad in prison as a friend long before he


had been elected as an MP in that way. You say that no politician


should ever have a relationship with someone like Babar Ahmad, but in the


Sadiq Khan statement he says, he made it very clear that he was never


a friend of Babar Ahmad's. He was a constituency MP, and that is when he


visited Babar Ahmad, to represent him as a constituent, and Babar


Ahmad has confirmed that is true. About Ahmad said in his interview


that he received as much support from Zac Goldsmith and Boris Johnson


as he did from Sadiq Khan, so what is the specific allegation apart


from the fact that you perhaps don't like the fact that he visited him in


jail? These are two completely different relationships. If we look


at what the various politicians have done, there have been these claims,


conservative politicians, Labour politicians meet with bad people, in


the room with bad people and so forth. We have a clear case of a


politician, it was not when he was an MP, it was before he was an MP,


the police made that clear in their statement, he went to visit him as a


friend, registered as a friend before that. The sister of Babar


Ahmad is on the record as saying they were friends. We need to


specify what you mean by friend. Because it is important, semantics


and language here are very important. As we heard from Babar


Ahmad in the interview he said, yes, we were friends because we were not


enemies. They knew each other as childhood mates, they did not


socialise together. They were not friends in the way that you might be


with people that you see on a regular basis, do you accept that?


If you have a convicted terrorist who, at the time sitting awaiting


extradition, and he is being visited, and there is an


extraordinarily clear protocol about who can visit under what


circumstances, then I think the French bracket mean something. If


you are registered to visit as a friend, this is not a generic term


in that way, it is a specific thing. If I may say, Sadiq Khan wrote the


foreword to a report that made outrageous claims, Franco propaganda


as far as I am concerned, about the impact the Babar Ahmad case had on


radicalisation in Britain, it had people like extremists even the


Prime Minister has called out in it, in which he said he had known him


for 15 years and he was a supporter of him. Let's look at the approved


visitors scheme. It exempts a number of categories including legal


advisers of categories including legal


of Parliament, which would have prevented Sadiq Khan going as an MP,


which is perhaps why the category of friend stayed rather than changed to


be an MP because he would not have been able to visit him and he wanted


to, because he was trying to fight extradition, which Boris Johnson was


also doing. I do not see the differentiation between Boris


Johnson and Sadiq Khan. This happened before he was an MP.


When the police spoke to him, it was before he was elected as an MP which


was later in the year. The interviews in the report before that


and the police make clear he was forthcoming about it and it refers


to a friend and a childhood friend and whatever else in that way. But


there is a much broader issue at play. It is an extraordinarily grave


issue of national security. This man is a convicted terrorist, there are


no questions about no matter how they try to spin the interview or


what happens in terms of seeking to make all sorts of claims about


America and I don't know what an Sadiq Khan was one of the


campaigners, among others, among some unsavoury groups, that had


tried to paint this in a very different light. The categorical


judgment of the US court, and this is absolutely clear, there can be no


doubt he is a convicted terrorist. Why does it imply that Sadiq Khan


had any sympathy for his views? He categorically state he did not, he


did not support anything Babar Ahmad was accused of and later charged. He


was representing him to some extent in the legal capacity. Yes, the term


friend has been disputed, and then as an MP. There is nothing there


that suggest Sadiq Khan sympathised, supported or had any connection with


what Babar Ahmad was doing or has done since. You will have two asking


yourself what exactly the relationship was and clearly he's


not happy to come and tell you. Except he has said categorically


they were not friends. Is he lying? I don't know if that is the right


word. I know there are questions about the relation ship and I know


the Rose report is clear about using the word friends. However, will say


again, it's a matter of grave national security concern and one


has to understand what the relationship was and we need to


understand exactly why a politician would be in a relationship of that


kind, supporting someone who ends up a convicted terrorist. Caroline


Flint, do you accept that Sadiq Khan to be more forthcoming about the


relationship? He has not come on today and not been as open and frank


as he could be about the relationship or not that he had with


Babar Ahmad. I think he's been very open. He can't come here because


he's doing a visit in Bromley as part of his campaign but he has been


open about this. To say something about this, before he was an MP,


Sadiq Khan was a lawyer, involved with lots of human rights


organisations and just like Zac Goldsmith and Boris Johnson, the


three of them were against the changes to the extradition treaty


between the UK and the US. That is why all three of them, in different


ways, were questioning the detainment of this gentleman because


he was being detained without trial pending extradition. Do you accept


they were friends? No, I don't. But he did visit Babar Ahmad in the


category of friend. As you pointed out, in order to get a visit, these


things are about filling in forms and what have you. What I think is


clear is that the man himself as they are not friends, since he's


been back, he bumped into him on the tube late at night and I think there


was something else when there was a community thing. Just to talk about


Sadiq, he is a British Muslim who has faced demonstrations outside of


mosques by more extreme views within Islam, as based step threats for


supporting same-sex marriage -- has faced death threats. He has spoken


against extremism and the negative campaigning we are hearing, not only


from this gentleman but also from Zac Goldsmith during the Mayall


contest is despicable. I think it is good to have British Muslims like


Sadiq Khan willing to stand up and speak against extremism which is why


he will be such a brilliant mayor for London. Has Sadiq Khan got a


case to answer? I certainly think it's incumbent upon him to be as


open and frank as possible. I think thereafter slightly different


responses he has given in the past. My understanding is he told the new


statement a year ago that Babar Ahmad, he saw him as a constituent


and a friend. I think there has been a shading of the definitions. The


thing is, Caroline Flint, you could view it that when it suited him,


Siddique Khan has gained favour in his constituency by making a big


deal of how well and long he has known Babar Ahmad and now it looks


as though he's a liability to him becoming mayor of London, he's


trying to distance himself? Identity there's anything that the has said


in which he has supported what Babar Ahmad was accused of all defended


his position, once he pleaded guilty and was extradited to America. I


think Sadiq, as long as I've known him, has been very clear about how


we have two fight extremism in Islam, which is affecting so many


people in our country and elsewhere. He has talked about as mayor,


standing up for better community integration but also being a figure


who will stand up for the British Muslim community, to argue against


those who spread such poison and hate within our country. When people


are saying, why aren't we see more British Muslim standing up and


saying that? He will stand up and say that, not just for British


Muslims but for Londoners. I'm afraid the record is very different,


let's look the at the record and the fax clearly. You can't say he did


that wrong because it is the same wind of thing Babar Ahmad is saying


about the US justice system. There are clear records. Babar Ahmad is a


convicted terrorist and Sadiq Khan filled out a form to visit him in


prison as a friend. These are facts on the record. When you look at the


campaign about Babar Ahmad, it is clear that Sadiq Khan was a leading


light in that campaign in terms of the way he spoke out and others did


not. One of the things he indulged what the narrative that somehow, US


justice is not good enough for a victor Mike that. But Boris Johnson


and Zac Goldsmith said the same. -- a victim like that. The campaign had


support from other quarters, not just the de Caen. You are trying to


tarnish Sadiq Khan by association. I'm not trying to tarnish anybody,


I'm trying to make sure the national security of this country is not put


in the hands of people who have associations they should not have.


What I'm saying very clearly because that is a very serious accusation is


that the record shows there were people involved with the campaign,


when it comes to the extradition but that is a separate matter. The


extradition law at the time, the campaign is a separate matter to


what happened about Babar Ahmad and the idea that US justice is not good


enough. He has been convicted as a terrorist in the US court and Sadiq


Khan wrote questionable things in that regard about whether we can


trust the US justice system. But he was not alone. We have to finish


there. Thank you. Now, they voted to remain in 1975.


Now they're campaigning to leave. They voted to leave in 1975.


Now they're campaigning to remain. Why have so many politicians swapped


sides in the Europe debate? So, three weeks in and it


feels like three months. The campaign ahead of the referendum


on our membership of the EU Besides those who had pretty much


made up their minds long before, it leaves many remaining baffled,


bamboozled and bored. I need a break just trying


to make sense of it all. Are people inners or outers


based on sovereignty, security, patriotism,


or is it something else? The centre of political


gravity, in fact. Go back to 1975 and it was


the Labour Party who A major chunk of the party


wanted to keep out. They thought the EEC,


as it was then, would be an obstacle to central planning,


nationalisation and expansion The Conservatives, on the other


hand, were pretty much united. The UK economy was in the doldrums


and Europe, they thought, was a place of dynamism


and enterprise. They hoped some of it


would rub off on the UK. In the 1970s, it could be argued


that two of our main political parties were to the left


of the centre of gravity in the EEC, The Conservatives felt that


continued membership of the EEC would drag the domestic centre


of gravity to the right. What they thought they would get


from Europe was That was why Margaret Thatcher


was strongly in favour of Europe until really quite


late in the 1980s. Her Euroscepticism came much later


than many people think. Fast forward 41 years


and the parties' roles are reversed. A large chunk of the Parliamentary


party and grassroots want out. Brussels, they feel,


is a brake on dynamism and economic growth and is holding back


the free market. Immigration is


uncontrollable from inside. Labour MPs, with a few notable


exceptions, want us to stay They point to the social protections


and defence of workers' rights. So what has happened


in the intervening years? All this can be explained


by gravity again. Mrs Thatcher takes the Conservative


Party further to the right than the centre of gravity


in the EEC and Europe. This leaves a vacuum which,


under Neil Kinnock and Tony Blair, moves Labour closer to the European


centre of gravity, in fact, pretty much ending up


in exactly the same space. The key factor that changed


Margaret Thatcher's attitude was a speech by Jacques Delors,


the president of the European Commission, to the Trade


Union Congress in 1988. He said that the trade unions


could get benefits from Brussels that they had not been able


to get from Westminster. That led Margaret Thatcher to say


in her Bruges speech shortly afterwards that we had not expelled


socialism by the front door in Britain, to have it brought


in by the back door from Brussels. Since then, all parties'


gravitational centres have I'm calling it Dilnot's Universal


Law of Referendums. And we're joined now by Lord Lawson,


who voted to remain in 1975 but is now campaigning to leave,


and Neil Kinnock, who was an outer in 1975 but is now campaigning


to remain in the EU. Bear with us! Why have you changed


your mind? In the first place, the European Union has changed. I was


already a little bit against it because in a way, although I was an


MP, I refuse to campaign in the referendum campaign of 1975 but I


did, and I make no bones about it, vote to remain. But what has changed


is the European Union. The fundamental change, the Rubicon, the


watershed was the introduction of the single currency. A single


currency only makes sense if there is a fiscal union, which means a


political union, which means the United States of Europe. That was


when it changed? Absolutely. I remember a great argument I had with


Hugh Gaskell, a little more than 15 years ago. He was passionately


against joining the European Union because it would be a political


union, and he said it would be the end of 1000 years of history for


this country. I argued with him that it was largely about trade. I was


wrong and he was right. Why have you changed your mind? Because the


realities have changed. When I campaigned in 1975 to come out of


the European Community and the common market, as we then called it,


I was concerned to a degree about Parliamentary sovereignty, although


not as much as many of my colleagues, including Michael foot


and Tony Benn. My main preoccupation was the effect


and Tony Benn. My main preoccupation Northern Europe would have in


pulling away jobs and investment from the UK, notably of course, the


part of it which I represented in South Wales. Over the intervening


years, it has become clear, not just that the single market of the


European Union has a strong social dimension, which is very appealing


to working people and those that I represented, but even more


importantly, that at the very time I was arguing about my concerns


relating to the pull of jobs and investment, the European Community


was developing a very well-developed regional policy in order to counter


that effect. To the extent that now, something around 200,000 jobs in


Wales relate directly to the single market. So they would go in your


mind? I'm not saying that they would go but they relate directly to the


kind of trade and investment religion chips that we have been


able to establish and develop over 43 years and -- relationships. And


in addition between the agricultural support payments under regional


payments, Wales, on the periphery, as we used to call it, is getting


roughly 1.7 billion per year directly from the European Union.


Although interestingly, the polls show that quite a lot of people in


Wales are Eurosceptic and would like to pull out. The case in 1975, I


made an eyesore to articulated the arguments them, that I'm one of


those -- and those who believe that Wales could be best served of


pulling out of European Union I think are wrong. Graham Brady, has


there been this political shift for both parties, if you like? These


gentlemen have changed their minds and so have many of their


compatriots. But generally, have both parties shifted to the right on


this issue? I'm not sure they have both shifted to the right but I


think there's been an enormous movement in the population here. But


also in other European countries. There was a poll a couple of weeks


ago that said 48% of Dutch people want to leave the European Union for


precisely the reasons Nigel has articulated. People are seeing the


fact this is now a very different thing. It does not fit with national


democracy. It is taking choices away from people and preventing us from


running our own countries in the way we want to run them. The problems


they have got in the Eurozone, a crisis which is unresolved, the


problem of dealing with migration which they have no way of resolving,


it is coming home to people that the only way to settle these things is


to change very profoundly from the settlement we have at the moment.


Is there a point that actually in the 1970s the Tories were happy


about the European project? They saw it as more entrepreneurial, more


businesslike than this country was at that time during the turbulent


1970s? Now they see it more as a left-wing venture, more socially


cohesive, and that's why the Tories have gone off it? I do not think it


is about left and right at all. What I would say about the change that


has happened in the European Union, and also the fact it is quite right


in theory as your correspondent pointed out that at that time the


British economy was not doing very well, in the 70s. The European


economy seemed to be doing very well. That carried an attraction.


What has happened since then, thanks to the refunds of the Thatcher in


error, we now have the strongest economy in Europe. -- the re-forms


of the Thatcher era. Following the single currency the euro area is a


disaster. I was Chancellor of the Exchequer for many years, I have had


some responsibility for looking at economic policy and how economies


work. In my considered judgment our success has got nothing to do with


the European Union. Indeed we would do far better economic and if we


were to leave. Any of the past that would be available after exit,


whether it was the Norway option, Switzerland, Canadian or just


relying on them would not give us adequate cover for the export of our


services, including financial services to the remainder of the


European Union and that could be devastating on its effect for the


whole economy. As an ex-Chancellor, Nigel, you know very well that we


depend very substantially, partly as a result of the changes that you


referred to being made, very substantially on being a service


economy with a very strong financial services sector. Even countries like


Switzerland have not been able to negotiate. We would not have access


the way we do if we left the European Union. Another country that


has been able to negotiate for access? Forget all this nonsense.


The great majority of the world is outside the European Union. The vast


bulk of the world. Most of these countries now are doing well


economic league, better than most of the countries in the European union.


Take a service that is close to your heart, television programmes. Do you


think suddenly it will be impossible to sell television programmes to the


European Union? That is way above my pay grade. You are saying that we


can get the access that we have now when we are not members of the


European Union. We will do far better. Gentleman, hold fire. I am


not prepared to gamble my grandchildren's future. You should


be concerned about being a self-governing democracy. We are.


That brings me back, on a self-governing authority, how much


of this is about sovereignty, or is this to some extent a red herring?


For you and some of your older colleagues in the Labour Party, they


have gone on a political journey, are you surprised that there are


hardly any in the Shadow Cabinet who would campaign vigorously to leave?


I am not surprised. I think compared to 1975 we are in a different type


of world, much more interconnected. And a different type of party? A


different type of party but we more interconnected. It is about the


economy but it is about security as well and things like the


environment. We cannot put up Fortress Britain around our shores


to deal with problems of pollution. But we are not part of the Schengen


zone now. I hear this, we are not part of Schengen, we are not part of


the euro, we can make decisions. I hate the whole project fear thing, I


want us to have a debate about the real world. If we leave the European


Union, the questions are still not being answered as to what the world


would look like for Great Britain. Because if we want to trade like


America, like other countries around the world, like the Canadians, the


Swiss, the Norwegians, they will have to die loot what they can ask


for in order to trade within the EU. A simple vision of what it looks


like for Britain out, never mind comparisons with other countries who


have their own arrangements, how would it be unique for Britain? A


free democracy that makes its own laws can decide who governs them and


boots out if they don't like them. And the ability to control our


borders. But we do control our own borders. There are people coming


into the United Kingdom without us having any control whatsoever. And


when it comes to trade we're seeing service export is twice as fast to


countries outside the EU compared to those inside. But if we had to rely


entirely on World Trade Organisation arrangements we certainly would not


get the kind of cover from those kind of arrangements that we get as


being part of the European Union. Most services in this country will


tell you, the single market has been resisted. It will happen. People


have been saying that for 30 years. You know very well that ever since


the establishment of the single market by the government of which


Nigel was a part, and it was a great stride forward, there have been


incremental improvements to extend the single market in services and


that is ongoing at this very moment. It will continue and it will be


achieved. One way it will not be achieved, of course, is if the


United Kingdom is not there to argue for it. For we finish, can David


Cameron survive as Prime Minister if the UK votes to leave? I hope the UK


will vote to leave, and when that happens I think it is important that


David Cameron remains Prime Minister, I would like a period of


stability and calm. We should have a period of discussion about how we


approach the renegotiation. Two years in which to renegotiate, I


thought you would be arguing that the last thing you would want is


huge uproar and upheaval when they are fighting for our country's life.


Does Nigel Lawson agree? Should he and can he remain? It is his


responsibility after a vote which I hope will come to leave the European


Union, it is his responsibility to implement the will of the British


people. Is it realistic for him to stay? Perfectly realistic. What


about Jeremy Corbyn, do you think he is as enthusiastic about remaining


as you are? He has made a strong commitment and he has made that very


evident. Whether he has got the detailed engagement that I have been


fortunate enough to have I do not know. But I do know that in terms of


principles, opportunities, safeguarding the future of the


British people, he is very favourable. Would you like to see


him campaign a bit more visibly? He's got a certain preoccupation


with the current elections. I anticipate that after those


elections he and his colleagues will be fully engaged in arguing for a


Remain vote. Gentleman, you are fully engaged in arguing for both


sides of this argument. Now to Scotland.


On Saturday, Nicola Sturgeon told the SNP spring conference that


if her party was returned to government in May,


the party would begin to build a new case for Scottish independence


Here's the First Minister, telling conference about her


"beautiful dream" of an independent Scotland.


Our dream is for Scotland to become independent,


to be in the driving seat of our own destiny,


to shape our own future, and on the basis of


equality, with our family across the British Isles


and our friends across the globe, to play our part in building


That is a beautiful dream and we believe in it.


Can any of the Unionist parties stop her in pursuing that beautiful


dream? And the Scottish Liberal Democrat


Leader, Willie Rennie, The Liberal Democrats are heading


for almost total wipe-out in Scotland. Could the Scottish Liberal


Democrats become extinct? This is dismal tour, we have a great chance


of growing. For two reasons. If you look at our team in Hollywood, we've


punched well above our weight in holding the SNP to account on the


police, investigating in colleges. Also the second thing, we've got a


big, bold package for this election. We are standing up for an investment


of a penny on income tax for education. Like Labour? Actually


yes, like Labour, but we are proposing it for education, to have


a transformational effect of ?475 million for a pupil premium for


nursery education but also for our colleges. It is different from


Labour but it is bold and I think it is progressive. It may be bold, but


to anybody listening, policy suggestions might be eye-catching


but where is the evidence people are listening to you to deliver it? The


latest polls in February, Liberal Democrats polling four to 6%. We


know the polls are not always correct but even so, where is your


evidence? In different parts of Scotland our message is penetrating,


and we can see it. How can you see it? Will it turn into seats? Yes, I


believe we are going to go this time. How many? It would be wrong


for me to start predicting. You sound very confident? I am, because


we have a bold package and a team that punches above its weight. If


you think it is a good idea to have the Scottish parliament dominated by


the Scottish National party, you only have to look at some of the


mistakes they've made in the last few years to realise that is not a


good thing. We need diversity, a strong voice for liberal values that


I stand up for. Would you ever consider joining any of the other


parties in the Scottish parliament? If you are worried about the


dominance of the SNP, and that shows no signs of abating, why not join


another party? Because I am a Liberal Democrat. You could join


forces. We work together on a variety of things. We worked


together on the referendum, on budget. And you share this policy


with Scottish Labour, who are also struggling, this idea of a penny on


income tax. Wouldn't it be worthwhile in your bid to stop the


rise of the SNP to join forces? The best way to get the most votes in


the election is to be clear, distinct, and campaigned vigorously


in the part of the country that you've got a great chance of


winning, and that's exactly what we are doing. I'm not interesting in


pre-election pact is, that's for other people to talk about. I am


interested in making progress in this election. I think we have


turned the corner. We had a difficult five years. But this time


round with a bold package and a great team we have a great chance of


progressing. So nobody has talked to you about joining forces on


anything. What about if the Conservatives leapfrog labour? Ruth


Davidson was putting that forward, cosy at a bail denied it would ever


happen. Again, would you do a deal with the Conservatives? Is that a


dismal prospect? Dismal prospect of having the Conservatives who talk


about the SNP all the time, the SNP who talk about the Conservatives all


the time, feeding off each other. One determined in part to break up


the European Union, the other determined to break up the United


Kingdom. We need parties that stand up for progressive politics and


keeping our country together. If the EU referendum delivers a Leave vote


in June, is there a scenario where the Scottish Liberal Democrats would


support the idea of a second Scottish independence referendum? I


want to stop all this, and that is the danger in the Conservatives just


now with their divisions on Europe, they are really risking another


independence referendum. We could end up using the two great unions of


the United Kingdom, partly because the Conservatives are so divided on


the issue, as we heard from Nicola Sturgeon in the clip, she is


determined to have another independence referendum. We should


be moving on for the next five years to talk about the big issues that


face this country. It is about protecting the environment,


investing in education, keeping what's best in our NHS, but also


guaranteeing Civil Liberties. That's the focus for the next five years,


not all this constitutional forever Meisel gave think that those two


parties are determined to do. -- nasal gazing.


Now, time to have a look at some of the stories coming up


On Tuesday, the Leave and Remain campaigns with be marking 100 days


until polling day in the EU referendum,


Also on Tuesday, the Northern Powerhouse will be in the spotlight


when Lord Adonis releases the final report of his


National Infrastructure Commission ahead of the Budget.


That's on Wednesday, when George Osborne when he says


equivalent to 50p in every ?100 of Government spending.


We'll have live coverage here on BBC2, of course.


On Thursday, David Cameron will be meeting with other EU leaders


in Brussels, where they are supposed to be finalising the deal


We're joined now by Tom Newton Dunn from the Sun and The Guardian's


Tom, let's start with your story about the Queen backing Brexit, was


Michael Gove your source? Nice try. We never talk about our sources. At


least I was open and transparent about it. He shut it down. So where


does it go from here? Buckingham Palace has launched a formal


complaint with the press watchdog and yet there are still stories that


she was upset because of a so-called sermon and Nick Clegg, what say you?


We say we standing by this, defending the complaint vigorously.


We expect that want to be interesting as it plays out. I


cannot tell you exactly what the Palace have complained about because


it is confidential but it will be interesting when that emerges


itself. We are taking the story on a little bit in our paper and have


another account of the quite extraordinary exchange to win the


Queen, Nick Clegg in Windsor Castle a few years ago. This time from a


royal courtiers saying it was Nick Clegg that started the debate by


giving the Queen sermon, and the Queen responded reasonably


witheringly, so the story goes on. Of course there is the urgent


question tabled by Tom Watson in the House of Commons just now, as we


just discovered, about the Privy Council and various different


infringements he believes have happened in it. So it will roll on


and on. At least you know that one of the


prime views of this show is the Queen so on Georges caught


everything you just that. Could the budget be rather boring? Certainly,


people have not been very interested so far, largely because, as you know


we're right in the middle of the election and lots of the good


stories, of course, Tom with the one around the Queen and we're looking


forward to that confidential complaint, when the sun breaks it in


the future! Do you? LAUGHTER I do think it is an important moment


the George Osborne. He still has his eyes on the Tory crown and he will


want to make a real statement on Wednesday, despite the fact he has


been getting us ready for the fact there could be spending cuts,


further spending cuts to come because of this ?4 billion of extra


savings that they need to find. The thing he has been talking about is


his manifesto promises to the British people. Really, he's going


to want to make progress on that raising of the upper threshold, the


raising of the personal allowance. I believe he is a political Chancellor


and Isis Becky will want to pull out a rabbit of the hat. I'm sure he


will and you are right but the problem is, he does not have much


room for manoeuvre because of his own rules and wanting to get a


surplus. Do you think he's beginning to regret that? He's written an


awful lot of checks at the last general election in the Conservative


Party manifesto, some of which we just heard about. Even in the good


times, it was going to be hard to catch the Czechs, tax cuts for low


income and higher income earners across the board. Now the times are


even tighter, he's an even more physical trouble. Chancellors always


find money from somewhere when they need it, that's the rule of all


budgets but this one has a second dynamic which is the EU referendum


which is pervading everything we say and do, tragically, down here. His


issue is, he would love to do something bold, the first budget of


a new parliament, the time to really cause trouble and dig in but he


can't because the Tory MPs almost certainly won't back him if it's


controversial. Also desperate to try to prove that the party is still


working, the government is still united and they can still do


interesting things but I think when it comes to it, he's going to on the


side of caution and it will probably be most boring budget we have seen


in a long time. -- he's going to go on the side of caution. Now I'm


disappointed. Taking that into account, only ?4 billion worth of


cuts, it may be tempting to raise fuel duty and it may be tempting to


do something, as Tom alluded to, to throw some red meat to the Tory


grassroots. That he's already been warned against taxing businesses


further. Is it going to be mainly from welfare? I think the difficulty


for him is where he finds the money. He's already backed off pension


reforms because of Tory backbenchers. As you say, fuel duty,


there were hints he might increase it by RPI but there are something


like 160 backbenchers who will try to stop him from doing that,


including a lot on his own backbenchers. One thing we already


know is going to happen is the ?1.2 billion saving from reforms to


disability benefits and I suspect that's an area where we will see a


big push back from Labour and charities tomorrow, these reforms to


the personal independence payment. Anywhere else that he tries to save


money on something Labour will rake over. We can expect a lot of stealth


taxes, like increases in insurance premiums, that are already going to


annoy motorists so maybe he won't want to go further with fuel duty as


well. Thank you for joining us. Enjoy it, anyway, even if it is not


as exciting as you hoped. Now, are your ready


for BoJo versus Obama? Boris Johnson has criticised


Barack Obama, following reports that he is preparing to come


to the UK to tell us to stay in the the EU, calling it


"a piece of outrageous Now that would be a head-to-head


debate worth watching! As he was born in the US,


Boris is one of the few UK politicians


eligible to become President. for a documentary that


goes out tonight, I asked him about his


ambitions closer to home. How has it changed,


your relationship with the Prime Minister, since you decided


to campaign for Leave? You know, you have got


to understand that my relationships and friendships


with government go back They are pretty much invulnerable.


Are they? Yes, to any short-term,


you know, disagreements So you are still friends?


Yes, of course. You once said, which is true,


that you had a greater chance of being reincarnated as an olive...


Yes. You remember, than


you did about being Or a baked bean, or decapitated


by Frisbee or locked But actually, looking at it now,


there's no one more likely to be Honestly, David Cameron


is doing a great job, everyone knows that and there's


a long way to go before And we're joined now


by Boris Johnson's biogapher, Welcome to the show. Opposing David


Cameron is one thing but do you think Boris has bitten off more than


he can chew in having a go at Barack Obama? Orange Mokoka he's had a go


at him before about parking fines, which the American Embassy in London


refuses to pay. It is one of his best columns, actually, I think. It


is a point which will have struck almost anyone who has been to


America that they have a very strong almost anyone who has been to


sense of nationhood and you can't do anything which infringes American


sovereignty and yet, here they are, advising us to join the European


Union. It's a completely contradictory position and Boris and


many of us has bolted but he put it very trenchantly today. His speech


on Brexit last week could only be described, I suppose as vintage


Boris but is it the right approach to winning, first the referendum


campaign and then that really do ship? I think he's a bit like the


British Army, whenever we get in a war, we usually have several


catastrophes before we get the hang of it. He's starting to get the hang


of it, I think but he was in a mess to begin with because his initial


pitch was he would do a better deal than Cameron and that was not


sufficient differentiation. It certainly did not involve a


trenchant defence of national sovereignty which many Tory


Eurosceptics would think was at the heart of the argument. Do you think


everything Boris does is seen through the prism of becoming Prime


Minister? No, I think he also wants to amuse us. I would say most MPs, I


don't know about present company but most MPs, the thought has


occasionally crossed their minds, I think that they might and certainly,


some of the most implausible candidates have stood for the


leadership of both the Labour and Conservative Party in the past so I


don't think you can hold it against Boris but he thinks about it as


well. Sometimes implausible candidates win! Who are you thinking


of? Are you running for the leadership? You will be the


returning officer! That's not very ambitious. You could do better. It


would sue John Mantle. But you say he had this motivation to amuse us.


Would the public view him as an amusing mayor of London but


certainly not someone they could consider as Prime Minister? Identity


no because both as a journalist and a politician, he is extremely agile


and that can be dismissed as opportunism and it can also be


regarded as a kind of enlightened pragmatism, because when the story


changes he changes his view. It depends what the want. But if the


millions of undecided voters need reassurance at the moment, then


Boris jumping about all over the place may not provide it. Was it


risky, his decision? You know many people have accused him of not being


authentic, that he was somebody who really was an instinctive inner. Do


you believe that? It was risky but it was an unenviable choice. Either


he became a loyal member of the Cameron - Osborne machine... But if


that is what he believes, people say you should support what you believe


rather than just be pragmatic? He believes he would be a lot better


than George Osborne and indie David Cameron. He's a lot brighter and


prepared to take the necessary risks, to drive a hard deal in


Brussels. But will he get on the ballot paper? If that was the cow


collision that he needed to guarantee being on the ballot, to


differentiate himself between him and George Osborne before he went to


the grassroots, do you think you will end up...? Identity no because


the frontrunner has not won this race since 1955 when Anthony Eden


succeeded Churchill so it's very unpredictable. If in the next few


months, he confirms his position as the darling of many Tory activists,


then many Tory MPs will be bitterly criticised if they don't make him


one of the last two. Is Simon Heffer right when he says only a handful of


MPs will support Boris before we get to the grassroots? I'm going to be


very boring... Don't be boring! I am applying to be the returning officer


so I don't think I should say. You have thought about this before you


came on. I'm disappointed in you. Are there only a few MPs who would


support Boris? I'm not even asking you, of your colleagues, would only


a few of them support? I've no idea, it is entirely up to my colleagues.


You must've had those conversations, surely. I have lots of private


conversations. And the word Private is instructive. Does Boris on the


mentally believe in anything? Yes, lots of things, I would say. --


fundamentally believe. He's a merry England Conservative, let people


enjoy themselves, he's completely uncensored aura is and he could not


stand up for some thing like marriage. -- an censorious. He wants


the genius of the induce people to be expressed in whatever way John


Bull happens to think is a good idea at the time. Caroline Flint, do you


find him using? On occasion and I have to say, some people like to


portray Boris Johnson as some kind of buffoon. I've never


underestimated him. I don't know him personally but I've always thought,


the way in which he goes on zip wires and what have you is part of,


I think, quite calculated, in some respects, it's part of his


personality but it is also to deflect sometimes from other things


that I think a more serious. It's interesting he's having a go at


America and Barack Obama on the fact that they would say, we find it


easier to deal with a block than different countries. When the people


who want to leave the European Union wanted, they use America as an


example of why we should leave and then we don't -- they don't like it


when the American president says he likes working with the EU. I think


it's a bit rich. Thank you for joining us.


And viewers in London can watch the documentary,


Boris: The London Years, on BBC One at 7:30pm.


There's just time before we go to find out the answer to our quiz.


The question was, who or what did George Osborne ask to "keep it down"


while he was writing his Budget in the House of Commons yesterday?


Was it A - noisy protesters, B - squeaky House of Commons mice


or D - Top Gear, who were filming outside?


So Caroline and Graham, what's the correct answer?


Matt LeBlanc, doing Top Gear outside. I think we can show you


some footage, or maybe only the picture of the team. What do you


think? No, here it is. Do you think it was inappropriate to film by the


Senate after over the weekend -- by the Cenotaph. It looks a bit close


for comfort. I've not seen this before. You would have said no? I


think there should be an exclusion zone. The defence that was put out


earlier was that it was a long lens and it was not near Cenotaph but


unless it was a really long lens, it looked quite close. Had you seen it


before? I saw the photographs but it looks very close to the Cenotaph,


even closer than the better grass suggested. Presenter Chris Evans has


said the footage will not be used following the complaints. Are you a


fan of the programme anyway, Graham? Yes, I think it is usually fun. It


is good that they push the boundaries but maybe sometimes they


push them a bit too far. You are not a returning officer on this or you


can safely say. What about you? I don't really watch it but hearing


Jeremy Clarkson said we should stay European Union, how interesting is


that? You brought it back to that! So Europe larks and fan? His family


are from near my constituency. I've not seen him in my constituency in a


genius but there you go. I bet you never thought that would be so


fascinating. That's all for today.


Thanks to our guests. The one o'clock news is starting


over on BBC One now. I'll be here at noon tomorrow


with all the big political stories And we will no doubt be talking


about the EU and the budget. Do join me then.




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