18/04/2016 Daily Politics


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Hello, and welcome to the Daily Politics.


George Osborne says the public wants less rhetoric and more facts when it


This morning, he's claimed that the UK economy could be worse


off by the equivalent of ?4,300 a year per household by 2030.


Critics have called the figures "completely worthless".


So do the Treasury's numbers really add up?


There's reported to be a looming crisis in primary


We'll talk to the Shadow Education Secretary


Labour decides not to allow McDonalds into its annual


conference, and faces accusations of snobbery against


And with England cricket legend Ian Botham saying he's batting


for a British exit from the EU, we'll be asking who really listens


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


of the programme today, two of our own celebrities


Well, they're celebrities in our eyes anyway.


It's Conservative MP Kwasi Kwarteng,


So George Osborne has stepped in to the debate on whether the UK


should vote to remain or leave the EU in the June referendum.


He's bought the Treasury's firepower to bear, releasing an analysis


of the economic impact of a vote to leave -


and it paints a pretty bleak picture of what could happen


Leave campaigners were quick to question the Treasury's


credibility, and described the report as "absurd".


The 200-page document claims the economy could be 6% smaller


than forecast by 2030 if the UK votes to leave the EU.


That's the equivalent - the report says - of ?4,300 a year


The Treasury insists there will be a ?36 billion a year black hole


in the UK's public finances if the it left the EU


- and that - they say - could lead to an 8% rise income tax.


Their calculations are based on what they call


the "middle option" - where the UK would negotiate a trade


deal with the EU similar to that which has been agreed with Canada -


but George Osborne insisted today that in all scenarios,


Britain would be "permanently poorer" outside the EU.


Leave campaigners called the research "erroneous",


and criticised the Chancellor's ability to predict what the economy


And campaigners also argue that in all the Treasury's assumptions,


Well, George Osborne has been hammering home his message


with a speech in Bristol earlier today - let's have a listen.


So the economic analysis shows that this Canadian-style arrangement


comes at a real economic cost for Britain.


The central estimate is that, in the long run,


GDP would be over 6% smaller, and Britain would be worse off


The people of Britain want to know the facts before they vote


The Treasury analysis steps away from the rhetoric and


Britain would be permanently poorer if we left the European Union.


Well, let's hear now from the man we turn


It's Paul Johnson of the Institute for Fiscal Studies.


Paul Johnson, what do you make of this ?4,300 figure? The first thing


to say is that it is broadly in the same direction as nearly all the


other economic analysis that has been done. If you move to a world


where you have less free trade and more expensive trade with the EU,


that is likely to have a negative affect on the economy. The scale of


that effect is uncertain for all sorts of reasons, partly because we


don't know exactly what the agreements are that we would come to


with the European Union if leaving, and secondly, the precise cost of


it. If you look at the range of things that have come out from


places like the London School of Economics, this is broadly in that


range. Perhaps a bit above the average, but it isn't out of line


with many independent forecasts. How accurately can you predict the


economy that far in advance? They're talking about 2030. I looked at the


calculation in the report. I'm no maths genius, but even if you were,


you would pause for thought. You cannot predict it accurately. Whilst


the Chancellor is using this single number, ?4,300, the report has a


whole range of numbers for basing the assumptions and different trade


agreements. What you can say is about the direction of travel. What


this is trying to do is say not how big the economy will be in 15 years'


time, but how much difference there will be under two different


scenarios. It's probably a mistake to focus very much on ?4,300. For


one thing, it isn't an income number. It is a GDP number.


Secondly, there's a lot of uncertainty around it. In the


context of the other analysis that's been done, though, they all point in


the direction of a negative rather than a positive effect. Are there


any scenarios in your mind where the UK would not be permanently poorer


if we left the EU? If it were possible to essentially organise a


set of trade agreements which are almost the same as they are now,


then the big effects would be much dampened. Two things to say about


that - first, there's no question that in the short run there will be


a cost because of the uncertainty involved. If you look at the


estimates of the amount of foreign direct investment we might lose, it


will have an effect. Those Treasury figures do not take account of the


short-term effects. In the long run, it is uncertain the kind of trade


deals we will manage with everyone else. The sort of regulations we


ourselves create will be a more or less regulated or open economy. As


you get further out, you have more uncertainty. If we governed


ourselves well, you can see a world in which, in the long run, we are


better off. And we asked to speak


to a Treasury Minister about today's claims,


but were told no-one was available. Happily we can speak


to my guests of the day, Kwasi Kwarteng, the report says the


UK will be permanently poorer if we leave the TEU under any comparable


scenario. I think these figures are absurd. The Treasury were the same


people who said at the beginning of the last parliament that we would


have eliminated the deficit by 2015. That hasn't happened. The Treasury


did not predict the 2008 credit crunch. So for a bunch of officials


and economists to say they can describe with in ?1 what the state


of the British economy and what people's economic well-being will be


in 2030, 14 years' time, is absurd. None of the predictions that were


made in 2002 about 2016 have stood the test of time. So to project that


far forward is intellectually dishonest. So we shouldn't trust


anything that the Treasury says in terms of forecast? We have to use


our brains as to whether it is plausible. We have just heard from


Paul Johnson that the figures may not be accurate to the pound, but


the figures broadly for into line with every other single piece of


economic analysis that has been done by think tanks put forward by the


government. It has fallen within that range. We have to look at what


is happening here. The pro-EU support has not found a positive


argument. They realise there is no groundswell of support in the


country for the EU, so they are embarking on Project fear. They will


say that British people living in Europe will have to come back, they


have said we will have to lose 3 million jobs, Nick Clegg has said


that, and they claim will work be poorer. There is a pattern of fear.


Margaret Prosser, is that how you see it? Is it about fear? Is it was


George Osborne is resorting to, because he sees it as one of the


biggest weapons in his armoury to shoot down the Leave campaign's


arguments. You almost said this yourself a moment ago. We have just


had Paul Johnson from the IFS, an independent body, a professional


person, who says, in his opinion, that this report is broadly in line


with what they think is likely to happen. He himself has said you


cannot predict that many years ahead, which seems quite sensible.


14 years. It's a long time. Is it worth doing it, Margaret? There's a


whole lot of other stuff in there. The thing that really gets me about


all of this... Politicians keep saying, at the end of the day people


are going to vote. It will be the People's decision. But some of this


stuff doesn't mean anything to anybody. So we need to develop


arguments, both sides are guilty of this, I think, develop arguments


which something. Paul himself said that 4000 odd pounds isn't income.


It is about the GDP. It is money that those households wouldn't have.


It isn't money in their pockets. It is a different concept. Except,


Kwasi Kwarteng, Paul Johnson said there would be this short-term


uncertainty. The deal that could be done in two years' time, five years'


time, may be very profitable to the UK, but there would be short-term


uncertainty and problems with things like foreign investment and the


markets. It's all speculation, but is it worth people taking that risk?


I would argue there are equally big risks in staying in. You've got a


migrant situation that no one has dealt with, Germany making deals


with Turkey that we don't know the conclusions of, a Europe reserve


whose problems haven't been solved... There's just as many risks


of staying in the thing, and still giving a net contribution of ?10


billion per year. You criticise the Remain group and the governments are


talking about project fear, yet since when did you raise the


question of Turkey in the past? Suddenly it is all over the agenda.


It is a real, though. I am not saying that in 2030, I am not making


any claims about that. I'm talking about what I see today. That's the


reality. Margit Prosser, Kwasi Kwarteng does raise... It has been


going on for years. In terms of risks, Paul Johnson says there is


short-term uncertainty. There is uncertainty about the Eurozone and


being part of the EU. From the eurozone crash, we know that had


negative consequences for the UK. That could happen again. There are


risks. Of course there are. There are daily risks in life. We had to


make a decision, weighing the balance of what is the best thing.


It seems to me that those people who are campaigning to come out other


kinds of people, their history tells you this, who are not interested in


the level playing field that you have to abide by as a member of


Europe. You have too abide by the rules of the club, and they don't


like that. Jeremy Corbyn made this point last week. If we came out,


what happened to workers rights? Almost all employment protections


are based upon European legislation. What would happen if we came out?


Could you guarantee that? You cannot guarantee anything at this point,


but there is an issue here, quasi-, about you have not said what the


deal would look like. No one was a bigot champion for workers rights


than Tony Benn. -- a bigger champion. But he voted in 1973. You


voted to stay out in 1975. Till the day he died, he was utterly


consistent on the EU. If someone like him was consistent, how can


Margaret say that we will not guarantee workers' rights? It is


ludicrous. Tony Benn was a champion of workers' rights. What about how


it would actually look? It's very well saying that it is very negative


of the Remain camp, that we would get a better deal than Canada,


Norway or Switzerland. Any of the scenarios under Norway, Switzerland


or Canada, the Treasury report still says we will be poorer. We have a


better bargaining position than those countries. The British economy


is far bigger than the Canadian, the Swiss and the Norwegian economies.


By definition, we would get a better deal with the TEU trading bloc than


any of those countries. What is wrong with that? That leaves us


trying to negotiate a deal when we are not at the table, part and


parcel of the decision-making process. I don't understand where


the benefit comes from. If you look at the examples of Canada, the seven


years that is quoted in terms of forming that deal, it may not take


that long. If you look at Switzerland and Norway, the quid pro


quo is having to contribute in some way to the European budget. What


makes you think that you would get everything? If Germany and France


were to allow that, everyone would leave the EU.


Norway voted in 1994, 52 proceeds of people did not want to join, and


that has now got up to 72%. 72% of Norwegians don't want to join. That


is not answering my question. More people, far more Norwegians have


decided not... Do they contribute to an EU budget? They have the deal


that they have but if the EU was so marvellous you would think those


figures would reverse, but 22 years of being outside the EU, the numbers


of people wanting to stay outside of the EU in Norway has only gone up.


It is very difficult to compare us with Norway, we are a completely


different country. And we could get a better deal? We could get a much


better deal, we have more to offer. Potentially that is what the Leave


campaign are saying, and we don't know, which is still the issue for


lots of voters, is that there is still uncertainty for both sides.


Today it's all about the by-election taking place this afternoon to elect


a new Liberal Democrat hereditary peer.


Who is eligible to vote in the by-election?


Or D) all three Lib Dem hereditary peers?


Kwasi and Margaret will give us the correct answer.


Parents of children starting primary school in England will find out


today if they've got the school place they wanted -


there could be a shortage of 10,000 places by 2020.


Here's the schools minister, Nick Gibb,


Well, those figures are simply not true.


It's claiming there will be a shortage of 10,000 by 2019-20.


Over the last five years, we've created 600,000 school places,


and we have plans to create another 500,000 over


In fact, just last year, the school system created


So the idea that there will be a 10,000 pupil place shortage


in 2019 is simply not true, and they've based their figures


Earlier I spoke to the Shadow Education Secretary,


Lucy Powell, and began by asking if she agreed with the claims


of a 10,000 shortfall in primary school places in England.


Well, no, actually, I don't agree with that figure.


The figure that we've calculated from those same figures


How have you calculated those figures?


They look more like the figures for families who are not


getting their first or perhaps second choice of primary


school, rather than not having a place at all.


There are lots of different figures here, so the aggregates of all these


figures show clearly that there is a pupil places crisis.


There are figures about the number of families who won't get


their first choice schools today, that's about one in ten


of all families today won't be getting their first choice,


and around one in 20 families won't be getting any


But there is quite a big difference, to clarify, between not having


a place anywhere at a primary school and not getting your first choice,


because many families would still be happy or at least satisfied


with a place at their second or third choice.


They will have a place, it's not the same thing, is it?


Well, no, but one in 20 families won't get any of their options


at all, and some of those won't be offered a place at all anywhere,


and that's why we're seeing a very significant increase in the number


These figures are now at the highest level they've been for 15 years


with nearly half a million children in class sizes over 30,


We're also seeing the biggest rise in what we call Titan primary


I think there were about 16 of those schools at the beginning of this


Government's time in office, and now these are well into the hundreds,


so we're seeing more children being pushed into larger class sizes


and some schools having to get really big in order to accommodate


Big schools is not necessarily a problem if the class sizes


Big class sizes, yes, parents will be concerned


The Department for Education says free schools will make up the gap.


The issue with the free market approach, the free school approach,


is that simply leaving such a big increase in demand to market forces


When you say market forces, you mean free schools in areas


where there are shortages will take up some of the pupils that aren't


finding places in some of the state schools?


Let's hope they do, but the evidence so far has been that


many of the free schools that have opened so far have been in


In fact, of the free schools that have already opened,


only 4% are in areas of the most acute need,


and simply leaving to chance, really, that some organisation


or some body of parents is going to come along


and want to open a school where it's needed just isn't sufficient.


When you look at some of the areas like Manchester, London,


areas where there's really high demand, Milton Keynes and others,


this approach is just not working, and that's why local Government


leaders are making the same argument as me today,


Tory local Government leaders are making the same argument as me


today that we've got to give local authorities both the powers


and resources they need to ensure that they can meet that statutory


obligation of ensuring that every child has a place.


What do you think the role of immigration has played?


Priti Patel, the Employment Minister, has said that


the shortfall in primary school places is due to uncontrolled


migration, migration from the EU, particularly in areas like London


where the birth rate is increasing, and that has put pressure


I think this is a bit of scaremongering by Priti Patel.


Let's just disaggregate some of the figures.


In terms of new arrivals to this country, families arriving now,


these figures are very small in comparison to the overall


What about the figures over the last five or ten years?


If you look at the rising birth rate, and let's remember


that is a very good thing for our country and our economy,


these are the people who will be paying...


Only a quarter of the new births in this country are from foreign-born


mothers, and many of those will have British fathers.


A rising birth rate is a good thing for the country, these


are people who will pay our pensions and pay for our NHS going forward.


You might remember, as I do, 15, 20 years ago, the big policy issue


and problem for our country was a falling birth rate


and an ageing population, and how are we going to pay


Is that why Labour was very keen to increase immigration figures,


in order to increase the population in areas where, as you say, it


It wasn't about increasing, necessarily being keen


to increase immigration, but overall, where immigration has


had a net benefit on our country in terms of people coming


here to work and contribute and so on, of course


there are parts of the country where we need to deal with that


and where it is particularly acute, and place planning is part of that.


But that is about local areas having the powers and the resources


they need to deal with these issues, but overall the increases to place


planning and the places crisis that we are seeing


is because of a rising birth rate, which is a good thing


for the country, which we've known is coming for a long time,


and which the Government have woefully failed to deal


with because they want to leave it to the free market.


You've admitted we have known about it for an awfully long time,


some of that will have fallen under Labour's final years in Government,


and that Government has been blamed for not planning properly,


you knew there would be a demographic bulge


and you didn't plan for it in terms of school places at the time


It is not nonsense, you said yourself...


We built over 1,000 primary schools, and this is about the efficiency.


The families who are today finding out whether they got a place or not,


their children are aged three or four, they were not even born


at the time of the last Government coming into office.


To try and blame Labour is a bit rich, quite honestly.


Except that this problem has been going on for quite a number


of years, you have been predicting it for a number of years.


It has been coming, new places have been created over a number of years,


over a number of years, but not enough, and there are not


going to be enough coming on stream over the next few years,


which is what the LGA and others are saying today,


You would not want, ten, 15 years ago, to have classrooms


with teachers in it with nobody in them, that would be that would be


a surplus of places, so you have to have sufficient


number of places, and the Government are not creating sufficient number


of places, and that is the issue, it is not about actual absolute


numbers, it's about sufficient places, and that is something


they are woefully neglecting and they are not putting in place


the powers that people need locally to plan for their areas


and make sure that parents are not disappointed.


Hundreds, perhaps thousands, of British men and women have


travelled to Syria to support, fight for and, in some cases, die


If they return to the UK, they face prosecution and imprisonment.


But a much smaller number have also travelled to Northern Syria


So what should happen to them when and if they return?


Last year, the BBC's Quentin Somerville spoke to


one fighter, known only as "Jim", about his reasons for


The particular thing that brought me here was seeing


a photo of an Isis fighter, holding up the severed head of


When I saw that, although I didn't know it was possible then


to come here and make a contribution, I felt I had to.


I think it's very important to make a clear distinction in the law


between those who are coming here to fight against Isis and those


This issue is being raised in the Commons this week


He's become involved after a constituent who fought


in Syria was arrested on his return to the UK.


What are you raising in terms of what you think should happen to


people who do go out to fight against IS? The problem here is the


Government doesn't have a clear policy. We have an increasingly


clear and quite strong policy on those individuals who choose to go


and fight against the Kurdish Peshmerga and the Iraqi army by


joining IS, but we haven't really come to a settled view on how we


treat those individuals who you might say do the right thing,


because they are certainly driven by a strong moral mission in many cases


to go and joint Kurdish militias, and this is an issue that goes back


hundreds of years, 50,000 Brits went to fight in the American Civil War,


several thousand went to fight in the Spanish war, and those


individuals who went out there and thought they would come back to a


heroes welcome but in fact came back to suspicion from the security


services and workplace discrimination, and I think we are


starting to see the same with this growing group of Brits going to


fight on the right side of this conflict. But there are problems


with this group, too. Are you suggesting that Britain to go


abroad, undertake military training, fight and kill people, should come


back to the UK and not face sanctions? It is a complicated


situation. The concern I have is that the Government are not doing


anything to discourage individuals from going out there in the first


place, so you can go online, Google search groups like the main foreign


fighters' organisation, go to their Facebook account, make contact with


them, for 400 or ?600 you can book a flight and be out there in a week's


time, that is what happened to my constituent, who was working in a


care home in Newark one week and a couple of days later was on the


being trained to be a fighter with the YPG. To be clear, you are not


encouraging these people to go out and fight, even if they are fighting


against IS. Are you saying the Government is doing that by not


stating the dangers of the other side? It is all over the place. We


are not discouraging people from going out there, you can give the


throw and tell the immigration officer what you are doing and they


will allow you onto the plane, and get when you come back some


individuals will pass freely through immigration


into the country, and others, like my constituent, will be arrested


under the terrorism act, questioned, potentially charged with a very


serious offence, and have it on their record for the rest of their


life. You are saying they should be stopped from going in the first


phase, not go and be allowed to come back? We should have a policy that


stops you from going in the first phase and treat you fairly and


consistently when you come back. Meaning you should be arrested and


face some sort of sanction? You should be questioned because we


don't do what these individuals are doing out there but you should not


be charged under the terrorism activities would be lulled all you


have done is bike with our allies. These are individuals, many using


British aircraft, giving them cover out in the field but are charged


with terrorism on their return. Are you surprised to hear there are


individuals who do explain their legitimate, as they see it, reasons


for going out to fight, even if it is against IS on the side of the


Peshmerga, and then being allowed to go? I'm not surprised they want to


go. But are you surprised they are allowed to go? I don't see how you


could prevent them if they are fighting with our allies. But how do


we know they are acting legally? We do not know which militias they will


be fighting with and the rules of engagement. That is true, it is


right I would question them coming back because you have to make it


clear who they are fighting for but if it is established that they are


fighting with our allies I don't see how you should treat them on the


same basis as people fighting for IS. How would you feel it in terms


of treatment of these people when they come back? I think the question


of going out is a difficult one because how do you know they are


telling the truth? You are hardly going to go to the immigration


officer and say, I'm going to join Isis. They could say anything, so


you don't know. As you say, it is hugely complicated and of course


there are so many different groups in Syria, so how do we know which


people they are going to get involved with? That is a key point


because the YPG, the most popular group British citizens have gone out


to, there are widely diverging views on this group. Some people glorify


their actions as brave individuals fighting against IS, Amnesty


International think they are guilty of war crimes, the Turkish


Government claim they are allied to the PKK and over the weekend we


heard two British nationals and an Irish citizen were arrested crossing


from Syria back into Iraq having been with the YPG, and we


presume it is under diplomatic pressure from Turkey to the Iraqi


Government to discourage people from doing this, so British citizens have


got to understand they are getting themselves into a war zone and an


extremely complex political and diplomatic situation, and I think it


is incumbent on the British Government to discourage citizens


from doing that. All of these groups could be interpreted as terrorists


or freedom fighters. The years we have had protocols about the


circumstances, haven't we? But the other aspects of the new way of


doing things is the use of drones. I'm a member of the joint committee


on human rights in the house, and we have been conducting an inquiry into


the use of drones because the Government has no real policy about


that either. There are many things that have arisen through these


Middle East conflict in more recent times. And we are playing catch up.


It is also to do with the rise of social media and the Internet. It


has never been so easy to go online and find out about a conflict in


another part of the world, and to be on a plane out there.


The good old high street betting shop is under threat, according


But is a flutter at the bookies harmless fun,


We'll be discussing that in a moment, but first,


here's Malcolm George from the Association of British


Britain, we are told, is awash with opportunities to gamble.


Online, in casinos, at bingo, in arcades.


But one sector seems to unfairly attract more attention than any


Casinos are now more accessible than they've ever been before.


This casino in Central London has an open-door policy,


which means you can walk straight in and gamble right away.


But for their roulette, the stake limit is an eye-watering ?5,000.


If you are over 16, you can buy as many National Lottery


scratch cards as you want, but the staff are not trained


If you do have problems, there's no information about where to go.


But one sector seems to unfairly attract more


attention than any other - high street bookies.


Staff can monitor what everyone is staking, winning or losing,


and if someone is starting to bet more than usual.


Of course, people can develop problems, but staff here are trained


There's a plethora of information about how to get help,


and a self-exclusion system, so a punter can bar themselves.


A bookmaker's is the safest place to have a flutter,


but high street bookies are closing at a rate of close to one a day.


Regulation, taxes and myth-spinning are combining to kill off


If they die out, then the safest place to gamble will disappear.


Welcome. Are you saying that betting is the lesser of evils in terms of


gambling, or that the Keys perform a social good? It is a mixture of the


two. Betting has existed for hundreds of years. It is the


location that you put it in and the support mechanism that you put in


place. Once you move out of that, yes, bookies social environment, a


place where people have fun and a flutter. The interaction with staff


makes it a very safe environment. But you can still rack up tens of


thousands of pounds in debt. You talk about being able to gamble an


eye watering ?5,000 at casinos, but fixed odd terminals allow people to


bet up to ?100, in spite of restrictions introduced last year.


Roulette is ?5,000 per spin. Why is it a safer place to have a flutter?


Our staff are trained. 90% is ?50 and below. The average loss in


quasi-pozmack constituency is ?7. You said that ?7 is the average in


that constituency, but there was a case of a man who took his own life


after racking up debts in a bookmakers. So it can happen. Though


vast majority of people with a problem can gamble in lots of


different areas. If you take away bookmakers, those people would


gamble elsewhere. It could be online, in concealers or other


bookies. But the environment of the bookmakers, combined with the staff


interaction, makes it genuinely the safest place to gamble. Are you


convinced, Margaret Prosser? Is it a loss to the high street, losing


these bookies? The way I look at it is, we have people who are desperate


alcoholics who drink far too much and drink every day. No one is


suggesting we should close every pub or wine bar. I think we have to keep


these things in proportion. Clearly, the ability of staff to watch out


when somebody they can see is in trouble, the availability of


councillors, the willingness of the person themselves to go for


counselling, all of that has to be thrown into the mix. I don't think


closing down betting shops is going to change any of that, really. The


only thing I would say is, you ought to go into a betting shop with your


eyes wide open. As my mum used to say, you never see a bookie on a


bike! Very wise. It's true. Kwasi Kwarteng, bookmakers have been


described as the fixed odds betting terminals as sirens on the rocks of


the week will. Has she got a point was blue Margaret made a very good


point about pubs. We have people who have serious problems with alcohol


addiction, but no one is suggesting we should ban pubs. Generally, most


people have some degree of self control. We are not talking about


banning them. But perhaps, as a result of other circumstances, they


are beginning to close down. Should there be more regulation,


particularly on fixed-odds betting terminal is, that seem to feed


addiction? I think there shouldn't be. The big problem facing due is


the competition from online betting. That's the same as any retail


outlet, if that's what you describe your business as. Every retailer on


the high street is under the same pressure from online competition. Is


that just the way it is going to go. You can defend your corner of the


community in that way, but in the end, it may be overtaken by


technology what ever you do? That is the challenge for policy. All


sectors of the industry pay significant tax. What needs to be


decided is the balance. With the range of gambling options, where is


it best for people to gamble? And does the betting shop defied


potentially the best environment? That is the challenge for policy


makers. If things continue, we are going to see a decline. Is it better


for society that gamblers who use betting shops now move into other


environments, which may not be as safe? Thank you very much.


Let's have a look now at some of the big events likely to be


making the political weather this week.


Today is your last chance to register to vote if you want


to take part in the Welsh, Scottish or Northern Ireland


elections or local, mayoral and Police Commissioner


Resident Commonwealth and European Union citizens


Union will decide whether to formally recommend a vote to stay


in the European Union at a closed session of their conference.


Commons clash between Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn and David Cameron


Scottish National Party will launch its manifesto for


Later in the week, US President Barack Obama is in London -


on Thursday he'll meet the Queen, who will be


He's also expected to make his much-publicised intervention


in the EU referendum debate, saying he believes Britain


We're joined now by two political journalists enjoying the bracing


spring air on College Green outside Parliament.


It's the closest they'll get to a holiday this side


it's Rafael Behr of the Guardian and Sebastian Payne


Welcome to you both. Rafael Behr the first day of official campaigning


was on Friday. Doris attacked the Prime Minister and his allies with


both barrels. -- Boris Johnson attacked. This rift is only going to


deepen further in the coming weeks. Yes, and it's hard to see how the


two bits of the Conservative Party will put themselves back together.


Going back to the end of last year, there was quite a lot of optimism in


number ten and among the Conservative whips that somehow the


Tories would just agree to disagree about this amicably. Then it would


be a comfortable win for Remain, and everyone could just muddle through


afterwards. Even when Michael Gove went off and joined the Leave


campaign, number ten people were saying, this will be civilised,


because he is a friend of the Prime Minister. That is now completely


forgotten, and the levels of animosity and passion are very, very


high. The things people are saying behind the scene is so toxic and


poisonous, it could get very nasty indeed in the next six weeks. Do you


agree that it has now got so toxic, Sebastian Payne, that it will be


impossible to pull the relations together after the European


referendum? It will be fascinating to see what the party does next.


Eurosceptic MPs do feel it has become very angry very quickly. What


we have seen today with the Treasury figures, saying that every household


will be ?4,300 worse off, that is the project max here we keep hearing


about. -- project fear. The way they are arguing about it is what we are


going to see every day in this campaign. The government says


something, and the Out campaign say the opposite. There is an important


personal driver. A lot of the public are saying that they don't have the


facts and they don't know what to think. For both sides, lots depends


on the message givers. If you are on the Leave side, to achieve your goal


of getting out of the EU, you have to destroy the credibility of the


Prime Minister. It's very difficult. Ukip don't mind doing that anyway,


but you now have a section of the Conservative Party whose biggest


political objective is to tarnish the reputation of the Prime


Minister. And that is very serious. To some extent, it is unavoidable.


How else do you drive that message home if you don't say that what the


other side is saying is complete nonsense? Absolutely. Look at what


Boris Johnson has been saying. He is a format schoolmate and colleague of


the Prime Minister. What we are seeing now is a lot of those


tensions coming into the public, and number ten and Downing Street are


keen to discredit what the outers are saying, saying that they do not


live in reality and don't understand what is going on. It will get a lot


worse. It will get more personal. The outer is really do see this,


they are attacking the personalities of the people involved. George


Osborne was saying today, did he really believe that Brexit was not


-- was going to be an option? I think on the outside there's a lot


of anger towards In people, who say they are keeping all options open,


where is in fact, they were remainders all along. Thank you.


Only six or seven weeks of this to go! Kwasi, would you use the


language that Stuart Jackson used in his tweet, that George Osborne is a


hypocrite? I didn't see the tweet. I don't think that personal abuse is


helpful. Temperature -- obviously, tempers are fraying. I do believe


that the party would come together. If you are calling the Prime


Minister the Gerald Ratner of modern politics, and on the other side,


George Osborne is saying it is nonsense economics. Illiterate that


you and your colleagues are for saying we should come out. How do


you reconcile that? Somebody put it to me, a rugby player, that if you


have a very hard rugby match... You are playing the people, not the


ball. You are playing a complex match. That does not mean that the


party will not come together. I think it will. When we look at the


contrast with Labour, with Jeremy Corbyn, that will unite the party.


Can the Prime Minister legitimately be in the negotiating team in the


event the UK votes to come out? I don't see why not. Do you think it


is likely to happen? I don't know, I don't know what is going on in his


head, what his motivation is, whether he would be motivated to


stay on, but I don't see any logical reason why he shouldn't be part of


the team. Would it be credible for the Leeds side, somebody who has


campaigned to stay in, would then be part of the trade deal to come out?


I don't have a problem with it. Ken Clarke said Mr Cameron will not last


30 seconds in his job if we vote to leave. The Prime Minister has a huge


fund of goodwill, it is remarkable that he achieved a majority after 23


years in which the Conservatives had not had one, and he is a very


powerful political figure so I don't see why he cannot carry on.


Now, the fast food chain McDonalds says


it's disappointed that Labour's ruling body has decided to ban it


from running a stand at the party's annual conference.


According to the Sun On Sunday, the company wanted to set up


an "interactive experience" display to support British farm produce


The Tories and SNP have allowed McDonalds to set up similar stands


at their conferences, and vetoing the stand


will reportedly cost the party ?30,000.


It's a decision that's angered some Labour MPs.


The former minister Ian Austin tweeted:


And Walthamstow MP Stella Creasey said she found McDonald's the best


Well, Labour says it doesn't comment on its commercial decisions


but my guest of the day Margaret Prosser is a former


Was it wise to turn down 30 grand? No! We are not in a position to be


turning down money. But, having said that, clearly if you have got a


principled position then money has to come second. But what is a


principled position against McDonald's? I don't get it. I was


hoping you did and you would be able to tell us! My view is, you look at


an organisation in the round. One of the things that McDonald's is famous


for is almost every year coming in the top ten of good employers. They


are good employers, they provide apprenticeships and trading, some of


us might be sniffy about the idea of flipping burgers for a living but


lots of people do it and the way in which McDonald's conduct themselves


with their workforce is really pretty good. Do you think it is a


snobby attitude? It is a snobby attitude. You'd think it is just


snobbery turning down ?30,000? I think it is a mixture of a snobby


attitude and somebody looking for a healthier option. What would you say


to the NEC? It is the executive that made the decision, isn't it? I would


have argued, let's look at how much money they have got in the bank


year. Do you think they will change their minds? It sounds like the


decision has been made. I don't think they would because the NEC


would have to do that and I think it is as it is. Do you think they


should explain why? They said they do not make comments on commercial


decisions, does it sound like they don't want to say the reason behind


it? We are not talking about discussing a contract or something,


which clearly do not want to see discussed, but to just say, I can't


see why they cannot say why they have made that decision. It doesn't


seem to me that it ought to be top secret. In your mind it is the wrong


decision? I think so, yes. What do you say, Kwasi? I don't understand


it, McDonald's is a respected company that employs thousands of


people, Ian Austin said his first job was there, people generally like


the product, it is a successful company, I don't understand what


they would turn them away. On the snobby side, what do you think of


Wes streeting saying it is not exactly a falafel bar, what is he


trying to say? I think he is trying to imply that certain people would


only find themselves in a falafel bar or some equivalent. If it were


reading or dangerous for the Labour Party to be seen in that now take


drinking Islington residing falafel eating non-McDonald's eating why? I


don't think it is helpful, particularly as huge numbers of the


members will not be in that class, shall we say. In that vein, the


Tories are famous for having a champagne bar and Harvey Nichols...


I don't know what you are talking about! Do these things matter at


conferences? I think some people get very, very tied upon this, and


actually a week or two after the conference no-one cares. Usually


because they are too drunk to care! As a journalist you can speak for


yourself! I am only the one reporting and following on this! But


there is a worrying point about Labour being anti-business, it is


worrying they should be so hostile to McDonald's, it is extraordinary


to me. I would like to know the reason why they have turned down


McDonald's because I think it is a myth that people like you, Kwasi,


like to generate and continue to grow that we are anti-business,


because I don't think, there is no evidence for that. If the Labour


Party would like to offer a full response, they can do so any time! I


shall see what I can find out! Now, whose opinion will you listen


to when it comes to casting your As we've amply demonstrated this


morning voters are being bombarded with information, statistics


and perhaps even a bit of rhetoric from politicians


and campaigners on both sides. But if you don't fancy listening


to George Osborne or Boris Johnson, could a celebrity convince you one


way or another? Let's have a look at some


of the famous faces to have publicly Former England cricketer Ian Botham


came out for the Leave campaign yesterday, saying Britain has "lost


the right to govern itself, to make our own laws


and to choose who comes here". Also in the Leave camp


is Downton Abbey creator and Conservative peer


Julian Fellowes, who claims remaining in the EU


would be like "chaining yourself to a radiator


in a burning building". And the Oscar-winning


actor Michael Caine, who says we "cannot be dictated


to by thousands of faceless civil Backing the campaign


to stay in the EU are TV presenter Jeremy Clarkson -


he thinks "Britain, on its own, has little influence


on the world stage". He's joined by Virgin


boss Richard Branson, who says leaving the EU would be


"very damaging" for Britain. And the actress Emma Thompson


who argues we'd be "mad not to" stay And in the last hour Ian Botham has


been speaking to the BBC about his decision to back the British exit.


It is an island. Remember that and be proud to be English. The economy,


economics, we are hearing this number and that number but I think


with ?350 million plus per week going into the EU, getting 50% back


if you are lucky, it is a lot of money and maybe we could address a


lot of our own problems with that money.


So do celebrity endorsements really change the way people vote?


To discuss this we're joined by the psychotherapist Lucy Beresford.


Welcome back to the Daily Politics. Do people listen to celebrities?


They do, all the time, not least because so much of our


decision-making is unconscious, so it is not so much that we listen to


the celebrity but that we are paying attention without realising it to


our emotional connection to that celebrity. Much more likely than


when people listen to politicians, for example? Yes, though your own


party political persuasion will mean you have allegiance to some people,


but in terms of celebrities it is very


much more under the radar. Does it depend on the celebrity how deeply


you listen to it, even subconsciously? Yes, and it depends


on whether that celebrity appears to fit with what they are talking


about. You can see why someone like Ian Botham, for example, might


favour Brexit because he has had a career which is very much about


leading from the front and being a bit of a maverick, a have an


emotional attachment to him that goes all the if you have an


emotional attachment to him that goes all the you think, this guyto


events at Headingley in 1981 and you have a powerful connection, you


think, this him and pay attention. If you don't know who we use because


you are too young or you think he is just a has-been sportsman, you won't


pay attention in the same way. Does it liberate people if what the


celebrity says resonates in a way you describe with Ian Botham, does


it mean they are free to boys their own opinions? I think they decide


that they don't have to pay attention to this too carefully,


they can just pass their allegiance over to someone else and get them to


do the talking. If you have got something as obligated as this kind


of reverend, where there are so many facts and figures being thrown at


you, not least today, a lot of people think, because we are group


creatures be preferred to the like belonged, we find it hard to run


against the herd, so if we find a celebrity that appeals to us we will


follow what they said. Do you agree celebrity endorsements are


important? I think they can cut through, I just about old enough to


remember 1981! I was six years old. What he did, for cricket lovers...


He was a hero. It will never be forgotten, people will identify with


that. I agree, I think people do, certain people will be really swayed


by Emma Thompson, because she stands for different approaches, different


attitudes towards politics and the way society is organised, etc, so


some people will be very influenced by that, I would have thought. What


about the politicians, because this band 's political spectrum is, you


have got people for in and for out across the political borders, but on


your side, is Nigel Farage an asset or not? He is an asset for people


who like him. I think he is a very marmite politician, someone who


people have very strong feelings about, and there will be lots of


people who trust him on this issue, and there may be people who are less


persuaded by him. What about George Galloway? Again, and maverick


politician, very idiosyncratic, very individual, and people may respond


to them. Tony Blair for the state campaign? He is pretty much


yesterday's man. You could argue that. What about Tony Blair? Those


of us who have stuck with Tony Blair through thick and thin will still be


influenced by that but there are many people who take a very


different view. He has become something of a Marmite character, I


think. What about Jeremy Clarkson? Would he repel or attract? I think


you would repel as many as it would attract. He is a love him or hate


him person. And that is why the celebrity chosen has to be so


carefully done, because you can have those characters that are very


divisive or if somebody else comes in you would think, I would never


have thought the Spice Girls would have supported Margaret Thatcher, or


whatever Ralph, so it catches you by surprise and if you are in favour of


those people do think, yes, I will pay attention to what you say, where


somebody is some thing Haka somebody says something and you don't see the


connection, people can really do that -- whereas if somebody says


something and you don't see the connection. People don't respond on


a rational level. There's just time before we go


to find out the answer to our quiz. The question was who is eligible


to vote in the by-election taking place today to elect


a new Liberal Democrat Or D) all three Lib Dem


hereditary peers? This is going to be hugely


embarrassing... I think it is all peers. It's not! It is certainly


not. I think it is Lib Dem Herod Tory peers. Yes, just the three Lib


Dem hereditary peers, there are more people going for it than there are


voting for them! But that is all we have got time for, goodbye!


You look like you've just seen the Grim Reaper.


Well, it was a lot to take in, wasn't it?


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